GRETNA, Va. – A small-town drug store is taking on a big role in the fight against the coronavirus
Gretna Drug, a family-owned pharmacy in its namesake town, has administered more than 1,000 COVID-19 vaccinations in the last 30 days.
Owner and pharmacist Chapman Brown said he made plans to distribute the vaccine as soon as he could.
“The only way we can make the numbers look better is to get people vaccinated,” Brown said. “We’re all on board about doing that.”
The business has gone all-in on administering the shots.
A small corner of the store has transformed into an impromptu COVID clinic, and longtime employee Kelly Sanchez now wears a wireless phone headset to take the avalanche of calls to the pharmacy.
“Our list is extremely long. We’re talking months,” Sanchez said. “I’ve been here 23 years and I’ve never seen anything like this in my life.”
Brown said the vast majority of people they’re vaccinating have been over 65 years old. He said their status as an independent drug store has helped patients feel more comfortable with the vaccine.
“We have a more intimate relationship with our patients and I think they have a lot of trust in us,” Brown said. “We have some people that are resistant to it, but after we talk to them, they tend to go ahead and get it.”
“I hope everybody will get it so we don’t have to wear these masks anymore,” Sanchez said.