ASDA to become first supermarket to open vaccine centres

ASDA will become the first supermarket to operate a coronavirus vaccination centre in-store with the capacity to administer 250 jabs per day, seven days a week.

According to the supermarket, it was selected by NHS England to run the vaccination centre from an in-store pharmacy in Birmingham. Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 jabs will be administered by ASDA pharmacy staff to priority groups.

The retailer is investing in transforming a department normally used to sell its clothing line, George, to make space for the vaccination centre, which will operate from 8am to 8pm from 25 January.

Public Health England and NHS England are assessing other ASDA sites that could support the mass vaccination rollout programme. ASDA said it offered NHS England full use of its 238 in-store pharmacies and pharmacists to assist in rollout of the Oxford vaccine programme as well.

People from priority groups for vaccinations will be offered an appointment from the NHS and can choose to select the ASDA store if it is a convenient location for them to receive the jab, but should not contact the store directly, said the supermarket giant.

Roger Burnley, CEO and president of ASDA, said in a statement: “We are incredibly proud to provide this service and are keen to do all we can to help the NHS and Government accelerate the rollout of the vaccination programme.

“We have an extensive nationwide logistics network that could support the storage and distribution of the vaccine and our highly-trained pharmacy colleagues are experienced in delivering large vaccination programmes, having recently provided nearly 200,000 flu jabs to members of the public.

“We are on hand to provide the NHS with any practical support required so that more people can quickly receive the vaccine,” he added.

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