Bill Expanding Vaccination Availability Passes Georgia State Senate

ATLANTA (March 7, 2013) – Senate Bill 85, a bill expanding the types of vaccines allowed to be administered by pharmacists and nurses under physician oversight, passed the Georgia State Senate today by a vote of 46 to 7. If signed into law, certain vaccines previously administered only under a doctor’s prescription would be made readily available at a neighborhood pharmacy or a quick care clinic, similar to seasonal flu vaccines. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Charlie Bethel (R – Dalton).

“By allowing nurses and pharmacists to administer vaccines meant to prevent other regularly occurring ailments, we will reduce the time needed to receive important medical services,” said Sen. Bethel. “This bill improves public health for all Georgians by decreasing the cost of care. Families will not be forced to take time off from work to care for a sick family member because of convenient access to preventive services.”

Under SB 85, a patient’s primary care provider of vaccines must be notified of any other vaccines administered at the patient’s request. The bill also restricts pharmacists and nurses from administering any vaccine other than a flu shot to children under the age of 18 without a prescription.

Vaccines that would fall under the administration expansion include hepatitis A; hepatitis A and B; hepatitis B; herpes zoster; meningitis; measles, mumps, and rubella; pneumococcal disease; tetanus and diphtheria; tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis; and varicella.

SB 85 will now travel to the Georgia House of Representatives for consideration.

For Immediate Release:
February 6, 2013

For Information Contact:
Jennifer Yarber, Interim Director