Grocery store pharmacies in DC offering leftover vaccines to anyone to avoid waste

Grocery store pharmacies in Washington, D.C., have started giving away leftover COVID-19 vaccine doses each day just before closing time to whoever is there to receive them, The Atlantic reported. 

The shots are open to anyone, not just those who are most vulnerable to the virus, and the pharmacies typically give one to three extra doses each day. Those who get the leftover vaccines also get scheduled for a second dose, according to The Atlantic

The D.C. health department has a mandate not to let any vaccines go to waste. Both Pfizer and Moderna's vaccines spoil quickly and can't be refrozen. 

"Pharmacists should follow our guidance, if doses will expire due to missed appointments, they should administer the vaccine to anyone who wants to take it," a health department spokesperson told The Atlantic

Leftover doses at the end of the day typically happen because the vaccines are shipped in multidose vials instead of pre-filled syringes. Also, people sometimes fail to show up for their vaccine appointments. 

Saad Omer, PhD, director of the Yale Institute for Global Health in New Haven, Conn., told The Atlantic that there's no clear, national plan for what to do with the extra doses. 

Read the full article here.  

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Health officials investigating death of Miami physician shortly after getting Pfizer vaccine


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