Questions and Answers About the CVS Pharmacy Partnership

Regulation | January 04, 2021 | by Jill Schumann

Derek Darling and Ryan Jeanneret from CVS/ Omnicare joined the LeadingAge Coronavirus Update call on January 4, 2021 to discuss the Pharmacy Partnership rollout.

Derek Darling and Ryan Jeanneret from CVS/ Omnicare joined the LeadingAge Coronavirus Update call on January 4, 2021 to discuss the Pharmacy Partnership rollout.

Q: We understand that there have been communication challenges in these early weeks of the Pharmacy Partnership. How are you addressing those?

A: CVS/ Omnicare has two initiatives underway. We have assigned every facility a human point of contact (POC) and their POC should have made contact with every facility. We have established internal pathways for those POCs to get answers to your questions. Our web portal is also available and Includes recorded webinars and resources. We are also in the process of launching an Office Hours Q and A Forum that should start this week. We will convene for one hour on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for at least the rest of January. We will be sending emails with the webinar link to the primary facility contact as listed with the CDC or through Red Cap and this forum will provide for updates and education as well as providing answers to questions.

Q: Tell us more about the Point of Contact. Is this the same person who would show up to do your clinic? Our members’ questions are often specific to things like their particular scheduling.

A: The POC is not an immunizer and will not come onsite for the clinic. The POC is a generalist familiar with the vaccine clinic process and the internal escalation process to get answers to questions. It is possible for the POC to designate a back- up contact in case that person is not available. If there are questions on the day of the clinic, the best person is the clinic team leader onsite.

Q: Some of our members have asked if they can use their own stuff to help pitch in with the clinic?

A: That is not a model CVS/ Omnicare is prepared to support. There are several reasons, but primary is the integrity of product. CVS staff have been rigorously trained in the protocols.

Q: We are also hearing concerns about scheduling. One housing member had no knowledge that a clinic was to occur until the pharmacist was already in the building going apartment to apartment. Another was told that their first clinic date is in March.

A: Much of the timing is dictated by the state activation dates. All states have activated nursing homes, but not all have not activated other groups such as assisted living and Section 202 buildings. The understanding is that all first Pharmacy Partnership clinics are scheduled for January and February, so thinks there must be miscommunication about the March date. Please reach out to the POC about this.

Q: Another question we are hearing often is confusion over whether independent living residents in Life Plan Communities can be vaccinated under the Pharmacy Partnership. It seems as if some states are allowing this.

A: This is a complicated question The original guidance CVS got was to only vaccinate independent living staff members, not residents. But in the past few weeks this has been discussed by various states. The key issue is vaccine supply and CVS is getting allocations based on state activation for nursing homes and then assisted living. CVS is now going by the original guidance and is not able to vaccinate independent living residents.