Walgreens and CVS on hiring wave seeking to fill 35,000 jobs for COVID-19 vaccine deployment
It will take more than one village to distribute the Pfizer PFE,
and BioNTech BNTX,
vaccine that was recently approved for emergency use authorization by the Food and Drug Administration.
Efforts are already underway to transport and distribute the vaccine across the country to health workers and residents of long-term care facilities who will receive priority access to the vaccine.
To speed up this process, Walgreens WBA,
seeks to fill 25,000 positions, including nurses, pharmacists and other healthcare workers, to administer the vaccine to people living in long-term care facilities.
is also “urgently recruiting thousands of qualified pharmacists, nurses and pharmacy technicians” in addition to the 10,000 positions already filled to help administer the vaccine, according to an email sent to customers.
The two drugstore chains hit a deal with the federal government in October to deliver a COVID-19 vaccine to nursing homes once one has been approved.
also prepares over 5,000 “Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacies to receive vaccine doses” and “ensures we have freezers in all of our pharmacies, as well as dry ice to meet all vaccine storage requirements. Walmart chief medical officer Dr Tom Van Gilder said in a corporate blog post on Dec. 10.
The company did not respond to MarketWatch’s request for comment on whether it was considering increasing hiring.
As more than 10 million Americans remain unemployed due to the coronavirus-induced recession, there is intense demand for new jobs, many in the service sector. Many Americans are hopeful that the arrival of the vaccine will pave the way for more job opportunities.
On Indeed, a job board, the share of searches containing “vaccine” jumped 116% from Dec. 1-7, AnnElizabeth Konkel, economist at Indeed, told MarketWatch.
“There has been an increase in the share of job postings that contain phrases like ‘COVID-19 vaccine’, ‘coronavirus vaccine’ in the job description,” she added. The majority of these assignments relate to pharmacy, health care or scientific research opportunities.
“While there has been a spotlight on the angle of vaccine transport, employers do not call the vaccine specifically in jobs related to storage or transport,” Konkel said.
That could change as the vaccine travels to rural areas of the country, said Susan Beardslee, freight transportation and logistics analyst at technology market consultancy ABI Research.
“In some areas of the United States where you don’t have a large centralized population, I’ll be surprised if FedEx FDX,
and UPS UPS,
do not associate or subcontract with other companies ”, which manage the delivery of parcels in these areas. However, hiring is not expected to begin until early spring 2021.
Because there is already a shortage of some 80,000 commercial drivers in the United States, in part due to an interruption in training courses due to the coronavirus and drug tests, wage increases and More desirable routes could be tapped to attract drivers who have left the industry, she added.
UPS and FedEx have jointly committed to transporting the majority of vaccines across the country. Both have already hired more than 50,000 workers in September and October in anticipation of increased demand for their services, both for vaccines and holiday shipments.
UPS is not currently looking to fill more positions, Dan McMackin, a spokesperson for the company, told MarketWatch.
As of Monday afternoon, 55 sites received vials of Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, General Gustave Perna, Operation Warp Speed director of operations, said on Monday. A total of 636 sites are expected to receive vaccines by Wednesday.