Hospital worker arrested after allegedly taking hundreds of COVID vaccine doses out of fridge


Local police announced Thursday that a Wisconsin hospital employee is accused of intentionally removing 57 vials of a CORID-19 vaccine from a pharmacy refrigerator. The worker had already been fired by Aurora Medical Center, stating that more than 500 doses of the vaccine were forced to be thrown as a result of the incident.

Grafton police said the person has been arrested on three recommended charges: first-degree reckless endangerment protection, a prescription drug and criminal property indemnity, all of them felony. Police did not reveal the man’s name, but identified him as a person. The suspect is being held in the Ozaukee County Jail.

The hospital launched an investigation and was originally led to believe that human error was inadvertently blamed, CBS Chicago reported. But on Wednesday, the worker who was responsible was admitted to do it, advocate Aurora Health said.

The department indicated that some patients were vaccinated with non-refrigerated doses. But it said health officials do not believe that anyone who received the dose, who was not properly refrigerated, is at medical risk, and instead described those doses as “useless”. The department estimated the value of the spoiled vaccines to be between $ 8,000 to $ 11,000.

Police in Grafton previously said the department, the FBI and the Food and Drug Administration are “actively” investigating the case.

Advocate Aurora Health said in a statement, “We believe our immunization from the epidemic continues.” “We are more disappointed that this person’s actions will result in more than 500 people delaying receiving their vaccines. This was a violation of our core values, and the person is no longer employed by us.”

Like other vaccines approved by Pfizer for emergency use in the United States, the modern vaccine requires initial transport and storage at deep-freeze temperatures, but then locally at more specific refrigeration temperatures for several days before use. Can be stored from.

Despite the federal authorities’ goal of vaccinating 20 million Americans by the end of this year, about 12 million doses were delivered by Thursday morning, according to the COVID data tracker of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Less than 3 million were actually administered.

Health and Human Services officials, the Department of Defense and Operation Taunting Speed ​​- a military-led operation to deliver vaccines across the country – told reporters Wednesday that the expected slow administration of shots could be partly due to the lag. In, but he admitted that not all vaccine doses had reached their intended locations.

The Chief Operating Officer of Operation General Speed, Army General Gustave Perna, admitted that some dosages were “on the road” on Wednesday. Nevertheless, he expressed confidence in the government’s efforts to vaccinate Americans against coronoviruses.

“We’re really doing well, in my view, in delivery,” he said, refuting the CDC’s data on Wednesday as “more than 14 million doses of the vaccine have been distributed.”

Audrey McNamara of CBSNews.com contributed to this report.

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