Local hero Temple Pharmacy is helping to drive down Covid-19 infection rates and save lives in Ealing with its strenuous vaccination effort. The pharmacy has already vaccinated over 3,000 local residents since January 2021.

‘It’s our duty’

“We see it as a duty to our local community, and the nation as a whole, to help the NHS vaccinate as many people as possible,” says Dinesh. “So we come out of this pandemic as quickly as possible.”

Dinesh, his team leader Sachin, and their eight staff, were confident they’d meet the strict requirements of the NHS vaccination rollout team. Says Dinesh, “Remarkably, we’re the only pharmacy in Ealing able to meet the criteria and offer the vaccine. Most pharmacies have one consulting room, we have five. Our store is spacious inside, with plenty of room to direct flow and create seating areas. So the NHS were confident we could meet their target of 1,000 vaccinations a week, while maintaining social distancing.”

‘Offering a higher quality experience.’

“We also work hard to ensure people are as comfortable as possible, as these are people in their eighties and nineties. We put the awnings out when it rains, we gritted the path when it snowed and we’ve created a comfortable seating area within the pharmacy. We saw the images of vulnerable people queuing outside NHS vaccination centres in heavy rain and snow, and resolved to offer a higher quality experience.”

Ealing resident Theresa Kelly says, “My elderly parents received their Covid vaccinations at Temple Pharmacy. I want to thank the whole team for the exceptional care, understanding and professionalism they have shown.”

And Philip Sindall says, “Temple Pharmacy has been a cornerstone of the Ealing community for many years and has always given us a friendly and professional service. Now it has embarked on the enormous task of vaccinating 1000 people a week. The incredible effort, and long hours all the staff have put into making this happen, should be applauded by us all.”

‘It means the world to get this right’

Dinesh and his team are passionate about the important role pharmacies can play in the community. “People may think we simply fill prescriptions and sell over the counter medicines, but we are skilled clinicians who offer advice, flu vaccinations, travel vaccinations, blood pressure monitoring and so on. This pandemic has shown just how much we can help people, especially as GP surgeries become even busier. It means the world to us to get this right.”

Pharmacies as pioneers

Temple Pharmacy recently became part of Alitam, a network of thriving UK and Ireland pharmacies. “Now we’re part of a visionary group, pooling our expertise and sharing best practices, investing in the latest technology to really support the health and wellbeing of our wonderful community. We can pioneer many more initiatives like the Covid-19 vaccination drive. And I’m more confident than ever that we can meet any challenge in future.”

‘Pulling together like never before.’

Beyond the efforts of his own pharmacy team, what has astonished Dinesh is the amazing response from locals. “We advertised for volunteers and had 200 responses. It truly gives you faith in humanity. We’re all in this together, and pulling together like never before.” Dinesh and his team adapted almost every aspect of their pharmacy practice in order to meet an extremely high target of 1,000 Covid-19 vaccinations a week. However, due to current arrangements between GPs and vaccination centres, Temple Pharmacy is operating significantly below capacity. “We are ready to make a real impact on the infection and death rate, while offering local residents a site that’s within easy reach.”

However, Dinesh, Sachin and the whole Temple Pharmacy team are delighted to be of service to local residents.

“We want all our community to know: we are here for you, no matter what.”