Japan's Okinawa Says Found Alien Substances in Several Doses of Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine
05:49 GMT 29.08.2021 (Updated: 09:37 GMT 29.08.2021)
© REUTERS / POOL NewFILE PHOTO: Medical staff prepares Moderna coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine to be administered at the newly-opened mass vaccination centre in Tokyo, Japan, May 24, 2021.
© REUTERS / POOL New
TOKYO (Sputnik) - Japan's southern prefecture of Okinawa has announced discovering foreign materials in several vials of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine, which came from different batches than the ones that are already suspended.
Foreign substances are said to have been discovered on Saturday in several doses that were about to be used at a vaccination site in the Okinawan city of Naha, however, their lot numbers are different from those that were barred from using earlier. As a result, the COVID-19 vaccination in the prefecture was suspended for the weekend.
On Thursday, Japan's Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., in charge of the vaccine's sales and distribution in the country, published the numbers of batches with contaminated vaccines — 3004667, 3004734 and 3004956. Japanese media report that the vaccines from those lots were distributed to 863 vaccination centres across the country.
Earlier in the week, about 1.63 million doses of Moderna vaccine produced in Spain were suspended in Japan after the health ministry detected alien substances in some of the vials. Two middle-aged men were reported to have died getting their shots of the Moderna vaccine from a contaminated batch.