Several dozen Pfizer vaccine doses were binned by Ayrshire Central Hospital in Irvine, Scotland, local newspaper The Herald reported, citing a source. According to the outlet, on at least two occasions, vials containing up to five or six doses had been thrown away after only one shot, as the NHS staff were being vaccinated.
"We have always had suspicions that vaccines were being wasted. Given the crucial nature of the vaccination programme, I found it ludicrous that such a thing would occur," an insider told the Herald.
In the meantime, the British Medical Association (BMA) Scotland has warned about possible risks of precious medications going to waste due to appointment scheduling changes (vaccine dose spacing had previously been prolonged from 3 to 12 weeks) and called for "full transparency" on the issue.
"At this stage in the rollout, Ayrshire and Arran have seen negligible numbers of wastage thanks to the skill and dedication of our immunisation team... Vaccinations took place at Ayrshire Central Hospital last weekend (23-24 January). Three vaccine doses were recorded as wastage from this vaccination session," a spokesman for NHS Ayrshire and Arran states.
Currently, the UK is the most affected country in Western Europe, with over 3.7 million cases and over 100,000 deceased, while 174,000 of those infections and over 5,700 deaths registered in Scotland. The country has rolled out a major national lockdown, as a new strain of the virus was confirmed in Britain back in December.