More than 300 vials of Sinovac vaccine wasted due to power outage in North CotabatoMay 15, 2021
NORTH COTABATO – Some 348 vials of Sinovac anti-coronavirus vaccine got wasted due to a power interruption in Makilala town early this week, officials confirmed on Friday.
Physician Gina Sorilla, municipal health officer in the upland Makilala town in North Cotabato, said the local health office had allocated the Chinese-made anti-COVID-19 vaccine for senior citizens.
North Cotabato’s provincial health officer, physician Eva Rabaya, said each vial of Sinovac vaccine costs at least P1,500, she said.
Personnel tasked to oversee the storage have the vaccines in Makilala municipal health office. They transferred the vaccines to another freezer in the town’s police station that has a standby generator after a power outage.
But they forgot to reconnect the power cord of the freezer to an electrical outlet from the portable power generator when the power supply resumed, according to a member of the municipal inter-agency anti-COVID-19 task force.
“Nobody noticed it. They learned about that apparent mishap after two days,” a source said.
Lito Cañedo, task force spokesperson, said they will turn over the spoiled vaccines to the Department of Health-12 for examination.
He is “pretty sure” the failure to follow the storage guidelines has spoiled the vaccines.
Storage of Sinovac requires two to eight degrees Celsius in a normal refrigerator. The temperature outside the refrigerator should not be over 25 degrees Celsius.
The Guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures of Sinovac prohibit freezing.
Each vial contains 0.5 ml of single dose.
To complete the vaccination, each recipient has to receive two doses by intramuscular injection. The second dose is preferably 28 days after the first dose.
The vaccine may remain stable up to three years, but its shelf life is only 12 months.
PHOTO: Contributed photo