MORE than 40,000 Covid vaccine doses have been thrown away at a German vaccination centre, it’s claimed.
Medical staff at the Hamburg centre are said to have binned them as they aren’t allowed to use leftover doses, NDR reports.
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More than 40,000 vaccine doses have been destroyed at a German vaccination centre, it’s fearedCredit: AFP
It comes as Germany battles a third wave of CovidCredit: Getty
An extra dose of the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines can be extracted from their vials.
But if they are used it breaches the number of vaccination doses approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) per container.
It’s feared several thousand of the precious vaccine doses are being destroyed each day at the Hamburg vaccination centre.
NDR estimated that 35,000 potential Pfizer-BioNtech doses and 8,000 potential doses of Oxford/AstraZeneca have been thrown out.
Critics have branded the rules “irresponsible” and called for life-saving jabs to be placed into arms.
The seven-day infection rate has risen to 169 new cases per 100,000 people, just below the record peak of shortly before Christmas.
And the number of free intensive care beds is close to its lowest level since the start of the pandemic with the country in partial lockdown since November.
It is really irresponsible not to exhaust everything that is currently possible
Dr Jana Husemann, chairman of the Hamburg General Practitioner Association,
Almost 83,000 people have died in Germany since the pandemic struck, with more than 3.3 million cases.
But Jana Husemann, chairman of the Hamburg General Practitioner Association, says doctors are throwing spare vaccines away over fears they’ll be liable for any damage from administering the jabs.
She and other GPs have used an unofficial eleventh dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine or a seventh dose of the Pfizer jab that can be taken from vials.
Adding that the pandemic in Germany is at a critical stage, and with vaccines in short supply, she said “it is really irresponsible not to exhaust everything that is currently possible.”
She has called on authorities to issue a clear statement to GPs and medical staff giving the jabs.
Dr Huseman added: “It would be nice if there were also an official announcement that you simply have a bit of support to inoculate the seventh dose.”
But Dirk Heinrich, medical director of the Hamburg vaccination centre, said it was not possible to use the extra doses there “for legal reasons”.
He added: “Yes, of course one is sorry if a vaccine cannot be used in this way.
“Personally, I believe that it is simply not feasible in large centres. Unless the state says: ‘Do this!’.”