Kentucky Distillery Ultra-Cold Freezer on Loan to Regional Pharmacy for Pfizer Vaccine
It’s a match made in healthcare heaven, brought together by the spirits of Kentucky. That’s "spirits", as in bourbon.
The Bard Distillery in Muhlenberg County is lending an ultra-cold freezer to Poole’s Pharmacy Care so it can offer the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The pharmacy has locations in Central City, Greenville, Lewisport, Livermore and Owensboro.
WKU Public Radio Reporter Rhonda Miller talked with owner Ron Poole, one of the pharmacy’s 11 certified vaccinators.
Poole: Tom and Kim Bard had told me that they had an ultra freezer that they had purchased, you know, just to let me know that if anybody needed it. So they worded it around everybody, and you know, everybody else seemed to either deal with the Moderna or the Johnson & Johnson that didn't need it. And then when we could get the Pfizer in, and of course, if you don't have an ultra freezer, you can't I mean, it can only last for two weeks at regular freezer temp. So that allowed us to, you know, get quite a bit of Pfizer in and you know, have it at one central location. And if we needed any of the stores, you know, for any of the vaccine clinics or a company, and obviously we can take it out and take it to that, you know, wherever that location is, whether it's ours or a company and get it done. So, it's really worked out extremely convenient. Tom and Kim are really nice people and they've been really gracious in letting me have it and got it set up and it’s doing good.
Miller: And so, where is the freezer, which location?
Poole: We have it at, we've got a corporate office in behind our Livermore store, which is really nice, centrally located. So, we can have vaccines to any of our stores within a half hour. So, we we've got it there. You know, it's a big freezer, our facility there has 10,000 square feet. That's where we have our corporate offices, plus we have our warehouse for all of our home medical equipment. So, it just worked out good to have it there. And, you know, being able to add added security there too, because we have five or six employees, we don't have people going in and out all day in our corporate offices. So, it just made sense to put it there.
Miller: So, in that freezer, the Pfizer vaccine can stay for any amount of time because it's at that low temp?
Poole: Three months, so that gives us plenty of time to get everybody vaccinated.
Miller: Do you have a waiting list?
Poole: Well certainly if anybody is interested in getting the Pfizer, which is the most effective, it's only three weeks apart from your doses, which is to me more convenient, you know, the closer together. And yeah, they can call any of our stores and they can request to be put on the Pfizer waiting list.
And the reason why is because after we get so many built up, you know, from 30 to any number above that, we can easily have a vaccine day, you know, and call everybody and make sure they can make it and we’ll verify everybody can get in and we'll go ahead and do it. That's what I did last Friday. We had enough people on our waiting list at both our Central City and Greenville stores. So, I did the morning at Central City and the afternoon at our Greenville store. So, what's been on short supply is the Johnson & Johnson one and I hope this week that we're going to get a good number shipment into all five stores. They've been kind of trickling in. Obviously, a lot of people are looking at getting just the one dose. It's just more convenient for them. Or somebody who maybe had a little, little bit of angst about getting shots anyway. It seems like the Johnson & Johnson is the most popular one requested anyway. But we've just about gone through all of our wait lists that are waiting on that. Our Owensboro and Lewisport stores did not receive any last week where others three stores did, so I'm hoping this week all five stores will get plenty of the Johnson & Johnson. One thing that we're proud of is, so far, we're almost at 1,000 doses and we still have not wasted a dose.
Miller: Oh, that's great. That's great. Thank you so much for talking with me Ron. I really appreciate it.
Poole: Alright, thank you. Bye.
Miller: I've been speaking with Ron Poole, owner of Poole’s Pharmacy Care.