Throughout the pandemic, we’ve celebrated the efforts of doctors, nurses and many other healthcare professionals working on the front lines fighting COVID-19.

Another profession has also played a critical role: Around the world, pharmacists have been at the forefront of the pandemic response. From the early stages of testing through the ongoing vaccination push, they have often served as the most accessible healthcare providers in their communities.

And the important contributions of pharmacists precede the age of COVID-19. During the earlier H1N1 pandemic (also known as swine flu), for example, the need for access was so great that Walgreens began administering vaccinations for the first time at all of its retail locations, any day, with no appointment necessary.