COVID-19 Vaccine Program-Federal Long Term Care Pharmacy Partnership Updates

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Immunization Program


Wisconsin began administering vaccine to skilled nursing home residents and staff on Monday, December 28th, after requesting activation of the Long Term Care Pharmacy Partnership on December 14 (the state must send a request of activation of the program to CDC at least two weeks prior to the requested activation date). The federal program is split into two components. Part A includes vaccination of skilled nursing facilities, and part B includes vaccination of the remaining facilities enrolled in the program. Currently only part A has been activated and therefore only skilled nursing facility residents and staff that are enrolled in the federal program are being vaccinated. As more vaccine becomes available, part B of the program will be activated and at that time other long term care facilities enrolled in the program will be scheduled for vaccination. The process of providing two doses of vaccine to all residents and staff in enrolled long term care facilities will take many weeks and assumes consistent availability of vaccine. Please remain diligent in fighting against COVID-19 and carefully plan for vaccine when it is available for your facility. The following updates will assist in planning to make your vaccination clinics successful.

Pharmacy Preparation


Each pharmacy has a registration process to update resident and staff information prior to the clinic. This process is extremely important so that the pharmacy can plan to bring enough staff and vaccine to ensure your staff and residents are adequately vaccinated in a timely manner.   Failure to be as accurate as possible with the registration process can lead to individuals not being vaccinated or vaccine being wasted.

Consent Forms/Vaccination Administration Records

The pharmacies will have consent forms that are required for the pharmacies. These forms have multiple sections on them and include a request for insurance information. To make the clinics run smoothly, all persons being vaccinated should complete all sections of the form ahead of time except for the screening section or questions that will be asked about how you are feeling the day of the vaccination. The insurance information is obtained so the pharmacies can bill insurance for the administration fee. If a person does not have insurance they can still receive the vaccine for no charge.

Facility Planning

Second Dose

The vaccine used for this program will require a second dose given 28 days after the first dose. The second clinic will be scheduled close to that 28 day time frame.  It is ok if the second dose is given a little early or a little late. The dose should not be given any earlier than day 24 and ideally no later than day 32 although you can give still give the vaccine after day 32. 

Residents that happen to leave a facility after receiving the first dose but before they are due for the second dose should plan to return to the same facility to get their second dose. Notifying the residents who have left about the details of the second dose clinic is the responsibility of the facility. Ideally a resident or staff person who has left the facility could receive their second dose at another location of their choice. However, in the next few months vaccine will be limited and not readily accessible at many locations. Since the second dose is imperative, the follow-up clinic at the facility is a guaranteed option for individuals to receive the second dose and therefore individuals should plan for that. The pharmacies and facilities can work together to structure the clinic to efficiently address residents and staff who have left the facility and need to come back to the facility for the second dose. These individuals can follow facility guidelines used for outside individuals who need to enter the facility.

Excess Vaccine

Even with the best planning between facilities and the federal partner pharmacies there may be instances where there are some doses of vaccine that cannot be taken back to the pharmacy for future clinics. These doses would potentially need to be wasted. To avoid vaccine wastage, pharmacies can vaccinate other individuals at the facility. The pharmacies, with help from facilities, will attempt to prioritize these individuals based on the on the State Disaster Medical Advisory Committee (SDMAC) vaccine prioritization guidelines. The pharmacies will only use up the vaccine that may otherwise be wasted so not everyone who may want or is available to receive these excess doses will be able to be vaccinated.

Individuals under 18

The vaccine used for the Pharmacy Partnership or Long Term Care Program in Wisconsin is the Moderna vaccine. This vaccine under the emergency use authorization is not approved for individuals under 18. Staff of long term care facilities who are 16 or 17 will need to seek vaccination outside of the Federal Long Term Care Partnership. As more vaccinators receive Pfizer vaccine there will be opportunities for long term care workers and volunteers in this age group to be vaccinated. More information is forthcoming. Currently some health systems (hospitals) may have limited opportunities to receive Pfizer vaccine, so you can check with your local health system. 

For up-to-date information, please visit the DHS COVID-19 Vaccine webpage.