DH investigates administration of expired vaccines to 21 individuals at UMP Medical Centre

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UMP Medical Centre in Kowloon Bay

31st March 2023 – (Hong Kong) The Department of Health (DH) is currently investigating an incident involving the administration of expired Comirnaty vaccines at UMP Medical Centre in Kowloon Bay. The DH announced that 21 individuals had been administered with Comirnaty bivalent and ancestral strain vaccines after the suggested use-by date, which had been discovered by the medical service provider during a review of their medical records.

According to the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme guideline and private clinic agreement, medical service providers under the programme are required to regularly check the suggested use-by date of vaccines and handle expired vaccines in accordance with the guidelines at appropriate times. However, in this case, 21 individuals received vaccines that had been kept one day to 22 days after the suggested use-by date.

Upon receiving notification from UMP Medical Centre, the DH conducted an inspection of the medical centre to evaluate vaccination procedures and reminded staff members to adhere to guidelines regarding the handling of expired vaccines. The DH also advised the medical centre on vaccine management procedures and internal communications to avoid similar incidents in the future. The centre’s vaccination services have been suspended, and the DH will continue to follow up to ensure relevant improvement measures have been implemented before services can be resumed.

The DH has consulted with a local expert and inquired with Fosun Pharma on the safety, efficacy, and quality of the vaccine. According to the expert, affected individuals do not need to be re-vaccinated, but the medical centre should actively follow up on their health condition. The medical centre has been requested to contact the affected individuals to explain the situation and follow up on their health condition. The DH has yet to receive any discomfort reports from the affected individuals.

Earlier, 14 members of the public were given the Comirnaty bivalent vaccine after its suggested use-by date at Quality HealthCare’s medical centre in Kowloon Bay.

The DH has reminded other private doctors and clinics participating in the Government’s vaccination programmes to regularly check the suggested use-by date of vaccines and handle expired vaccines at appropriate times in accordance with the related guidelines. This incident serves as a reminder to all medical service providers to adhere to the guidelines strictly to ensure the safety and efficacy of the vaccines administered.