A four-year-old girl was accidentally given a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine instead of a flu shot at a pharmacy in the US, local news reported.
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While the dose is safe for adults, the coronavirus vaccine has not yet been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for children under the age of 12.
Victoria Olivier took her daughter to a pharmacy in Maryland to get a flu shot, but the pharmacist at Walgreens accidentally administered the wrong vaccine, the mother told reporters.
A spokesperson for Walgreens told Fox News in an email that patient safety is the company’s “top priority” and “events like this are extremely rare and we take this matter very seriously.”
“We are in touch with the patient’s family and we have apologized. Our multi-step vaccination procedure includes several safety checks to minimize the chance of human error. We’ve recently reviewed this process with our pharmacy staff in order to prevent a future occurrence,” Phil Caruso said.
The child’s family told local news outlets that their daughter is not suffering from any major side effects and that they will follow up with her doctor in case any arise.
They will reportedly not be filing a complaint against the pharmacist.
Approval for emergency use of COVID-19 vaccines
The US FDA is currently under immense pressure to authorize COVID-19 vaccines for children under the age of 12, with the reopening of schools threatening to cause a surge of infections among young students.
The Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine has been authorized for people aged 12 and above in the US, and pharmaceutical companies are currently preparing clinical data to seek approval for shots for children under 12.
In the United Arab Emirates, the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine has been made available for children aged three to 17, according to the country’s National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA).
The decision came after “extensive evaluations and is based on the emergency use authorization and local evaluations which are in line with the approved regulations,” NCEMA said in August.
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