Local Pharmacies Gear Up For Phase 2 Of COVID-19 Vaccinations

Thursday, January 7th 2021, 9:46 pm

STROUD, Okla. -

In small towns, local pharmacies are gearing up for phase two of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan. Some have been waiting a long time to get approved by the state, including one News On 6 spoke with in Stroud.

The owner of Stroud Drug, Bill Ash, said his pharmacy is finally approved to give COVID-19 vaccines, but there are still a lot of questions left unanswered.

Ash said getting approved was an arduous process.

"You jump through one hoop and then you jump through another hoop, and meanwhile our phones are ringing off the walls as customers want to know when they are going to get vaccinated," he said.

Ash applied to the state in November so his pharmacy could distribute COVID-19 vaccines.

"We're out here to help. That's what we're out here to do, and if we could get the vaccine, we could be administering it," he said.

Ash is prepared to take in the easier to handle Moderna vaccine - and while he's waiting - he's taken dozens of calls from worried customers.

"I've had extensive conversations with some of them on it," he said.

"When they're gonna get it, and is it safe, that sort of thing. I've tried to reassure them that I think this is the way to go," Ash said.

He's built up trust as a local pharmacist over the last two decades with plenty of experience with vaccinations. Lately his focus has been geared toward building up trust in the COVID-19 vaccine.

Ash said he still has questions about the state's distribution timeline, specifically when his pharmacy and others like it will get doses to administer to their communities.

"We don't know much, we're not getting information at all. And I'm not trying to blame the health department, I know they're overwhelmed," he said.

Ultimately Ash knows he's on a long list of pharmacies waiting to get their share of vaccines - but he's ready to help. It's just a question of when.