In the United States, a healthcare worker intentionally spoiled hundreds of doses of COVID-19 vaccine
Wisconsin State Hospital officials announced they were forced to throw away 570 doses of COVID-19 vaccine because an employee accidentally left dozens of vials out of the refrigerator overnight. But later, the medical facility said that the incident was not accidental. Writes about it The Washington Post.
In fact, an employee of the Aurora Medical Center in Grafton (Wisconsin) later admitted that he deliberately removed more than 50 vials (1 doses in 10 vial) of Moderna vaccine from the refrigerator.
The hospital has fired the employee, whose identity has not yet been identified, and local and federal authorities are currently investigating.
The employee's intervention will delay the vaccination process for hundreds of people across the state, hospital officials said.
“We are disappointed that this man's actions will delay the vaccination of more than 500 people,” the hospital said in a statement.
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The vaccination process has just begun, with vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech being approved less than a month ago. The distribution of these drugs has so far lagged well behind federal projections, raising concerns over whether the outgoing administration will meet its already revised target of distributing 20 million vaccines by the end of the year.
As of Wednesday, December 30, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 12,4 million doses of the vaccine had been distributed in the United States, but only 2,6 million of those were administered. (This means that only 1 in 125 Americans received the first dose of the vaccine.) Representatives of the US President Donald Trump's administration dispute these numbers.
In mid-December, a hospital in Grafton, a city of nearly 12 people north of Milwaukee, received hundreds of doses of Moderna vaccine.
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The hospital said 57 vials of the vaccine, which must be stored at low temperatures to remain viable, had to be thrown away when found outside the refrigerator. The hospital launched an internal investigation and on Monday, December 28, said the worker "accidentally forgot" the vials on Friday when retrieving other items in the refrigerator and then forgot to put them back due to "unintentional human error." Then the representatives of the hospital apologized: "We are clearly disappointed and sorry about what happened."
But on Wednesday, December 30, representatives of the hospital said that the employee changed his version and "admitted that he deliberately took the vaccine out of the refrigerator." After the dismissal of this person, health workers reported this to the police.
Grafton law enforcement officials said the FBI and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have joined in investigating the incident.
It is not yet clear what motive the employee could have for the destruction of the vaccine. A hospital spokesman said it will release more details of the investigation when it becomes available.
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