Understanding the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program
CDC partnered with CVS, Walgreens, and Managed Health Care Associates, Inc. (MHA) to offer on-site COVID-19 vaccination services for residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities across 54 U.S. jurisdictions.
The Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care (LTC) Program facilitated on-site vaccination of residents and staff at more than 62,000 enrolled long-term care facilities (LTCFs) while reducing the burden on LTCF administrators, clinical leadership, and health departments. At no cost to facilities, the program provided end-to-end management of the COVID-19 vaccination process, including cold chain management, on-site vaccinations, and fulfillment of reporting requirements. LTCF staff were also vaccinated as part of the program.
This program was implemented in close coordination with jurisdictions; LTCFs; federal partners, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS); and professional organizations, including American Health Care Association (AHCA) and Leading Age, which include members across both nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
The program had a huge impact, with approximately 8 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered to LTCF staff and residents by May 2021. Additional information about vaccine distribution through this program can be found on the CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Data Tracker. Listen hereexternal icon to learn more about the initiation of the Pharmacy Partnership for LTC program.
Learn more about The Pharmacy Partnership for Long-term Care (LTC) Program with these simple FAQ’s.
Maintenance Phase: Ensuring Access
The Pharmacy Partnership for LTC Program successfully completed three on-site vaccination clinics in all facilities enrolled in the program by May 2021. However, ensuring ongoing access to vaccine following the completion of the program is necessary because new residents are being admitted to these facilities daily, and new staff and individuals who may have initially been hesitant may now wish to be vaccinated.
In mid-March, the federal government began providing a direct allocation to long-term care pharmacies participating in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program through three group purchasing organizations and one LTC pharmacy —Managed Health Care Associates, Inc. (MHA), GeriMed, Innovatix, and Omnicare. Each week, these three group purchasing organizations and Omnicare order and distribute vaccine to their member long-term care pharmacies.
View the list of long-term care (LTC) pharmacies enrolled with the federal government to provide COVID-19 vaccine.
- Learn more about ways for long-term care facilities to continue receiving COVID-19 vaccine.
- For information and resources to help you answer questions and build vaccine confidence among staff and residents, please see the Long-Term Care Facility Toolkit.
In November 2020, LTCFs had the opportunity to sign up for the program and select a pharmacy partner. CDC worked with jurisdictions to match facilities with their requested pharmacy partners. In some instances, CDC and jurisdictions reassigned pharmacy partners to facilities to account for logistics and program needs. Pharmacy partners reached out to participating LTCFs they were matched with to coordinate vaccination efforts, and clinics began at participating facilities in late December 2020.
As part of this program, which is free of charge to facilities, pharmacy partners are:
- Scheduling and coordinating on-site clinic date(s) directly with each facility
- Ordering vaccines and associated supplies (e.g., syringes, needles, personal protective equipment)
- Ensuring cold chain management for vaccine
- Obtaining consent from facility staff and residents prior to vaccination and ensuring participants receive the vaccine EUA (Emergency Use Authorization) Fact Sheet
- Providing on-site administration of vaccine to all residents and any staff not already vaccinated
- Reporting required vaccination data to the local, state/territorial, and federal jurisdictions within 72 hours of administering each dose
- Adhering to all applicable CMS COVID-19 testing requirements for LTCF staff