Get to know our Pharmacy team assisting in the vaccine rollout

A masked nurse stands in the Sandown Vaccination Clinic, holding a vaccination card with both her hands.

Monash Health has recently reached the milestone of more than 300,000 vaccines administered within our high-volume vaccination centres and hospital clinics.

This is a fantastic effort, achieved through the tireless work and collaborative approach of many Monash Health employees and departments.

Monash Health Pharmacy is a department that has been instrumental in assisting in our vaccination program.

The Pharmacy team support the supply of COVID-19 vaccines to our vaccination centres and oversee this process from receiving the vaccines and delivering them to our centres, right up to when they are in immunisers hands.

A multidisciplinary team consisting of Pharmacists, Pharmacy technicians, Pharmacy students and Nurses have been working together to provide vaccinations for our employees, patients, and the broader community.

Tom Chynoweth, Deputy Director of Pharmacy, said, “being able to contribute all these skills has been immensely professionally satisfying.”

Tom said that while the vaccination program has seen a rapid pace of change with the setup of vaccination sites and storage and distribution hubs, “the enthusiasm, flexibility and agility of the broader pharmacy team to meet the program needs has made it as seamless as possible.”

Samantha Pool is a Grade 3 Pharmacy technician who has been working at COVID-19 vaccination clinics since the beginning of the vaccination program.

Samantha’s position involves preparing AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines and completing vial documentation and logistics from the major vaccination hubs.

For Samantha, working as part of the complex multidisciplinary team at Sandown Racecourse has been a privilege.

“My position involves separating daily staff across two immunising rooms, liaising with the nurse in charge about booked doses for the day and number of doses to prepare and troubleshooting any issues that arise”.

Samantha was previously involved in aseptic compounding, and when positions presented within the vaccination program, she was naturally drawn to it.

“The fact that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity to be involved in a pandemic made it even more appealing.”

Samantha reflected on day one at the Monash Medical Centre clinic compared to working at the high-volume vaccination centres today.

“When the vaccination program commenced, we thought 400 daily vaccinations was a huge number. Once we moved into Sandown Racecourse, our number slowly increased up to 1,000; flash forward to six months later, our clinic is even bigger and busier. Our new standard daily vaccination number is around 2,500 a day with the capacity to reach 3,500 in the coming months.”

We commend the incredible work of our Pharmacy team and thank them for their assistance in achieving this vaccination milestone.

If you are a Pharmacy technician who would like to join this fabulous team assisting in the vaccination program, check out the current position opening.