Rite Aid pharmacies will begin on Friday administering Covid-19 vaccines in seven US states and jurisdictions as part of the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program, the drug store chain said in a press release Thursday.
Chris Savarese, Rite Aid director of public relations, said at launch the store expects to receive 116,300 doses for about 1,200 Rite Aid locations, which is about 100 doses per participating store.
"Initially, vaccine appointments will still be difficult to schedule at any provider. However, we expect to see availability of the vaccine improve over time," Heyward Donigan, Rite Aid president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.
The states where Rite Aid will begin vaccinations are California, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The cities of Philadelphia and New York City, which are designated as separate jurisdictions by the federal government, are also included,
Vaccine eligibility is based on state guidelines.
The Biden administration announced last week the federal government will begin direct shipments of coronavirus vaccines to retail pharmacies starting on February 11, with a total of 1 million doses going to about 6,500 stores before eventually expanding.