Mercer County Health Department responds to vaccine clinic mistake

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BLUEFIELD, WV (WVNS) — State Officials visited the Mercer County Health Department after they mistakenly administered the wrong dose for a Moderna COVID-19 booster shot.

Administrator Roger Topping, said the health department missed information requiring booster shots for the Moderna vaccine to be administered in half doses and instead of full doses. They administered full doses at a vaccine clinic on October 28, 2021, and after receiving questions regarding the correct dosage, Topping notified State Health Officials of the mistake.

“It was an error, a large error if you consider the number of people that were given shots,” Topping said.

The vaccine clinic was later shut down by the state Tuesday, November 2, 2021. West Virginia Health Commissioner Dr. Ayne Amjad, made an announcement in response to the mistake in a press briefing Friday, November 5, 2021, and acknowledged the issue is not one unique to Mercer County.

“This is not something that just happens necessarily just in Mercer County, it has happened in other counties across the state,” Amjad said.

Topping said the state health officials inspected the facility and provided suggestions on how to correctly manage vaccine clinics going forward. The Mercer County vaccine clinic is still shut down as of Tuesday, November 9, 2021, Topping said the timeline for the process moving forward is unclear.

“I believe they recognize that it was an error, it was not deliberate, it was not anything other than an error,” Topping said. “Hopefully what they are going to do is take the information back to Charleston, they are going to compile it, review it and give it to their bosses who will review it and make a decision as to when we can, or if we can, reopen our clinics.”

Topping said people who wish to get their COVID-19 vaccine or booster shot can do so at a local pharmacy or doctors office. He is still urging the public to get the vaccine for yourself and your children.

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