Innovation Compounding, an independent pharmacy based in Kennesaw, is helping accelerate the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in Georgia.

The pharmacy is vaccinating health care professionals from the comfort of their vehicles now and will begin vaccinating people 65 and older starting Monday per Centers for Disease Control & Prevention guidelines.

“We are honored to help administer vaccines to Georgia’s heroes in health care and vulnerable populations 65 years of age and older,” said Shawn Hodges, PharmD, president/CEO of Innovation Compounding. “The more people we can vaccinate, the faster everyone can safely return to work and move about their communities.”

In support of Operation Warp Speed, Innovation Compounding brings vaccinations to Cobb in partnership with Georgia Department of Public Health and Cobb & Douglas Public Health, as well as with volunteer support from Mercer University College of Pharmacy.

Who is eligible?

Phase 1A is vaccinating now. Many people who work for large health systems will be vaccinated by their employers.

“Who is going to service the independent health care workers?” Hodges asked. “They serve our community and should be vaccinated as early as possible.”

Innovation Compounding is following the CDC’s phased distribution schedule to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. At the time of this release, the vaccine is only available for qualified Phase 1A health care workers, such as physicians, nurses, respiratory technicians, dentists and hygienists, nursing assistants, assisted living facility staff, long-term care facility staff, group home staff, home caregivers and Emergency Medical Services.

Phase 1B will begin Monday with the pharmacy taking appointments to vaccinate people who are 65 or older.

As Phase 1c for essential workers approaches in late January or early February, Innovation Compounding leaders said they aim to host a single-day event to vaccinate up to 5,000 patients in partnership with the Cobb & Douglas Public Health. They are also working with Mercer University’s College of Pharmacy and other healthcare professionals to make the event possible.

How to register

New appointment times open every time the pharmacy receives more vaccines from the Georgia Department of Public Health. People interested in being vaccinated are encouraged to visit the www.VaxGeorgia.com website often, as the supply of vaccines and vaccination times are subject to availability.

How to get vaccinated

Registered health care professionals can participate by completing an easy and convenient four-step process to be vaccinated from the comfort of their vehicle in 30 minutes or less. Register at www.VaxGeorgia.com, arrive at Innovation Compounding in Kennesaw, get vaccinated and schedule a follow-up vaccination.

Maintaining the integrity of the vaccine

Routine processes and procedures remain in place to ensure the safety of any vaccine that is authorized or approved for use.

The independent pharmacy is licensed to ship specially formulated pharmaceuticals to 49 states, making the company a natural fit to maintain the integrity of the COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine must be refrigerated and can only be kept at room temperature for a short period of time.

“Packaging and shipping temperature-sensitive drugs is something we do daily,” Hodges said. “Whether a medication goes across the state or across the nation, we know exactly what the temperature is when it gets there. Applying this skillset to handle these temperature sensitive vaccines and to serve our community in this way is an honor.”

Dosing information

The vaccine for COVID-19 that will be administered is made by Moderna Inc., officially known as mRNA-1273, and is known to be 94.1% effective. Two doses are required and should be administered 28 days apart. Due to multiple COVID-19 vaccines approved for use, it is important to know that the second dose must be the same brand as the first. Immediately after receiving a vaccination at Innovation Compounding, an appointment can be scheduled for a second dose.

For more information, visit www.InnovationCompounding.com.

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