Breaking down walls: Teamwork key to effective vaccine rollout

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  • A. Smitherman says:

    If folks are truly interested in system integration and breaking professional silos, folks have to address the economic incentivize of perpetuating silos. For example, the Ontario Pharmacists Association will advocate and negotiate for pharmacy compensation in perhaps a different way than the Ontario Medical Association- with whom the MOH is obliged to negotiate with. This article seems to advocate for a “kumbaya” approach to collaboration. But you can’t do this in a pandemic effectively if you have ignored these barriers to effective collaboration for decades. In terms of universal electronic documentation of vaccines- this is a longstanding problem. Flu shots given at pharmacies are available for all to see on Connecting Ontario, but not much else.

  • Sam says:

    It is self-serving for these 3 doctors to say – “Family doctors and their teams have longstanding relationships with patients.”

    First of all, other professionals like pharmacists do as well.

    Secondly, you don’t need to have a relationship with a patient to administer a vaccine.

    I am a paramedic and have administered flu shots to seniors in their homes for the past few years. Family doctor’s aren’t doing that- they earn more money by staying in their offices, now doing phone calls from home etc.

  • Phil says:

    Glaringly absent in your trifecta of primary care teams, community pharmacists and public health units are patients! And of course, nurses and nurse practitioners.

    Glaringly absent in the authorship of this article are community pharmacists.

    I also encourage the authors to read the RCTs in the Moderna and Pfizer trial to see the important role of pharmacists not just in vaccine administration, but also in vaccine preparation.

    I get the spirit of this article- but the authors seem rather disingenuous when speaking on behalf of another regulated health professional group.

    Let’s not forget how physicians have historically crapped on other RHPs having expanded scopes of practice, including outrage when pharmacists were first given authority to administer vaccines.

    The patient voice in having choice is important, as is the patient voice in knowing professionals work together and aren’t interested in turf protectionism.


Tara Kiran


Tara Kiran is the Fidani Chair in Improvement and Innovation at the University of Toronto. She practices family medicine in a Family Health Team in downtown, Toronto.

Jeff Kwong


Jeff Kwong is a family physician at the Toronto Western Family Health Team, a Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of Toronto, and the Interim Director for the Centre for Vaccine Preventable Diseases at the University of Toronto.

Noah Ivers


Noah Ivers is a family physician at Women’s College Hospital and the University of Toronto and holds a Canada Research Chair in Implementation of Evidence-Based Practice.