Perceptions of pharmacists as providers of immunizations for adult patients

Pharmacotherapy. 2003 Feb;23(2):248-54. doi: 10.1592/phco.


Pharmacists have been involved with patient care at the Family Medicine Center, affiliated with the Medical University of South Carolina, for over 20 years. In 1999, to add to existing clinical services, pharmacists administered immunizations (influenza and pneumonia) to over 400 adult patients during clinic visits in designated patient care rooms. A few months after the immunization period, both health care providers and immunized patients were asked to respond to a survey regarding their opinions of pharmacist-administered immunizations. Response rates were 71% for health care providers and 16% for all immunized patients. Most (90%) of the health care respondents felt comfortable with pharmacists providing immunizations and thought it was appropriate for pharmacists to provide this service. However, 35% of the providers did not agree that pharmacists should provide immunizations in local pharmacies. Most (97%) of the immunized patients felt comfortable with their provider but did not recall that a pharmacist had administered the immunization. In addition, 64% questioned the qualifications of a pharmacist to administer immunizations, and only 43% felt comfortable having a community pharmacist administer a vaccine. By extrapolation of these data, one can determine that patients do not regard pharmacists as qualified providers of immunizations. Further study of patient perception of pharmacists in this role is being conducted.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunization / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Immunization / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Pharmaceutical Services*
  • Pharmacies
  • Pharmacists / psychology*
  • Professional Autonomy
  • South Carolina
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vaccines / administration & dosage*


  • Vaccines