Rural Missouri county sees 1,500 doses go unused in mass vaccination event

Rural Missouri county sees 1,500 doses go unused in mass vaccination event

PUTNAM COUNTY, Mo. (KMOV.COM) – A rural Missouri county near the Iowa border says it was left with around 1,500 unused doses from a mass vaccination drive it held on Saturday.

In a <a href=”https://www.facebook.com/putnamcohealthdept/photos/a.150670108292658/5841322372560708/” target=”_blank”>letter</a> published Monday, the Putnam County Health Department said it received 2,340 doses of the Pfizer vaccine for a mass vaccination event on February 27. However, only 700 people were vaccinated, leaving the health department with nearly 1,500 unused doses that were then given to other counties. However, 143 doses had to be thrown out, health officials said. Once a vaccine is diluted, health officials say it must be used within six hours or it goes bad.

There were several reasons for the doses being thrown out. Health officials say in some cases, needles dislodged, not all vials rendered six doses, some people who reserved an appointment did not show up and others booked duplicate appointments.

The situation in Putnam County comes amid complaints that rural Missouri has been favored when it comes to vaccine supply, something that Governor Mike Parson has <a href=”https://www.kmov.com/news/gov-parson-defends-vaccine-rollout-despite-data-showing-underperformance-in-st-louis-region/article_0a86514c-6c91-11eb-85f7-3f9a1b953678.html” target=”_blank”>denied</a>. Some St. Louis area residents have driven several hours to rural counties where some doses have gone unused.