DOH probes wasted COVID-19 vaccines stored in turned off freezer
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) is investigating the reported wastage of 348 doses of Sinovac COVID-19 vaccines after they were kept in a freezer that was turned off for more than two days in Makilala, Cotabato.
During the Laging Handa briefing on Saturday, DOH Undersecretary Ma. Rosario Vergeire said the investigation will show if there are persons who should be held accountable for the incident.
“Atin pong iniimbestigahan ‘yan ngayon . We already coordinated with the regional office there to conduct the initial investigation and submit to us a report,” Vergeire said.
“Titingnan natin kung meron kailangan may managot at kung ano ang dapat gawin pagkatapos nito. So let’s wait for the final investigation report bago tayo makapagbigay ng impormasyon ukol dyan,” she added.
Lito Cañedo, Makilala IATF spokesperson, said the vaccines were kept at the municipal health office’s freezer to be used for vulnerable sectors when a brownout struck at 12:30 p.m. on May 7.
“Because of the brownout, health workers and the police in charge of securing the vaccines decided to transfer the vials to the freezer at the Makilala police office, where there was a generator,” Cañedo said.
Power from the Cotabato Electric Cooperative was restored at 2 p.m. on the same day prompting the Makilala police to shut down its generator. But no one remembered to plug the freezer back to the regular power supply.
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