In response to the results of the April 2020 survey on pharmacists’ willingness to provide COVID-19 services and resources needed for service provision, the IPLC and its member organizations have been working to remove barriers and support the profession of pharmacy.
General COVID-related educational resources are accessible here. ISHP also has a member-only COVID-19 resource center with additional resources.
- Following the survey results the BOP took steps to establish a pathway for pharmacies to obtain necessary PPE when it was otherwise not available in the marketplace due to lack of supply or significant expense. First, learning of supplies.idaho.gov which provided masks, sanitizer and gloves to Idaho small businesses to keep their doors open. While these supplies were not the items necessary for providing COVID-19 testing, the site did provide supplies for businesses to stay open to the public. Next the board staff reached out to the Idaho Office of Emergency Management (IOEM) which is tasked with distribution of PPE to healthcare entities in Idaho. IOEM agreed that pharmacies are eligible healthcare entities for receipt of this PPE which would be appropriate for use in providing COVID-19 testing. Requests should only be made for those items that are unavailable in the marketplace. Their supply program runs through the public health districts and details for both are found below.
- The mask, gloves and sanitizer (MGS) sourcing program was launched on May 14th by Governor Little as a response to increased demand in medical supplies as a result of the COVID-19 epidemic. The program’s goal was to distribute PPE while supply lines were prepared and outfitted. Now that supplies are available from various retailers, the program was shut down on August 31, 2020. The state distributed an astounding 4,019 orders worth a whopping $793,954 to small businesses, non-profit organizations and political subdivisions. PPE can be purchased through the Idaho PPE Exchange website: www.idahoppeexchange.com
- The IOEM rolled out a statewide inventory system called Survey123 and is used to request PPE from the state. This operation tracks daily utilization from all inquiries to determine supply needs throughout the state. Anybody that is filing requests for assistance through either the state or their local public health district must fill out the survey. It should be filled out every day at the same time (preferably in the morning) whether you have been utilizing PPE or not. FEMA requires this data in order to approximate PPE consumption and provide our state with the appropriate assistance in a timely manner. The link to Survey123 is below. Click and follow the instructions. https://survey123.arcgis.com/share/9c50dac7187848d19b3a11bad25b61a8
- ISHP has delivered educational programming specific to COVID-19 at their 2020 Fall Meeting as well as hosted a Practice Advancement Initiative (PAI) workshop focused on providing implementation and billing supports to pharmacy personnel.
- Check out ISHP’s member-only COVID-19 resource center with additional resources.
The Idaho State Pharmacy Association (ISPA) has worked with numerous stakeholders to advocate for the needs of the profession, including conversations to advance payment of services, secure PPE, provide testing, and collaborate with national pharmacy organizations.
- Idaho State University College of Pharmacy (ISU COP), with support from grant funds from the BOP, is working with Community Pharmacy Enhanced Services Network of Idaho (CPESN-ID) to provide COVID-19 testing services to rural areas throughout the state. Sites are billing for service delivery and sample collection through Idaho Medicaid. ISU’s press release with further details and a list of participating pharmacies is available here.