Hospitals boost security to safeguard COVID-19 vaccines

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Hospitals and health systems across the nation are bringing in extra security personnel, running cameras and upgrading locks to safeguard the limited supplies of COVID-19 vaccines, according to The Hill

Operation Warp Speed, which oversees distribution of the vaccines, requires medical facilities to have a security plan, and some hospitals have been working on those plans for months. 

"We've known from the start that this was going to be a vaccine that's going to be rationed, so we've been thinking all along about how to secure it in a couple of different ways," Melanie Swift, MD, a physician leading the vaccine rollout at Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic, told The Hill. "That's making sure none of it goes missing." 

Hospitals are taking other measures to safeguard the vaccines due to rumors of illicit black markets for vaccines. One hospital, Mount Sinai in New York City, is having an external auditor oversee its distribution plan, according to the report. 

"There may be a responsibility to be extra cautious in this case because there might be a pressure to divert this [vaccine] that institutions ought to be aware of," Daniel Sulmasy, MD, PhD, acting director of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics and a biomedical ethics expert at Georgetown University, told The Hill. "There may be reason to be extra careful that that doesn't happen with these."

Read the full article from The Hill here

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