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South Korea allows health workers to squeeze extra doses from vials of COVID-19 vaccines

South Korea allows health workers to squeeze extra doses from vials of COVID-19 vaccines

A medical worker receives a dose of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at the National Medical Center vaccination center in Seoul Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. South Korea began vaccinating tens of thousands of workers at front-line hospitals in the second day of its mass immunization program. (Song Kyung-Seok/Pool Photo via AP)

SEOUL: South Korea’s Disease Control and Prevention Agency has allowed health workers to squeeze extra doses from vials of coronavirus vaccines developed by AstraZeneca and Pfizer.

The decision on Saturday (Feb 27) came after some health workers who were administering the AstraZeneca shots reported to authorities that they still saw additional doses left in the bottles that had each been used for 10 injections.

KDCA official Jeong Gyeong-shil said skilled workers may be able to squeeze one or two extra doses from each vial if they use low dead-volume syringes designed to reduce wasted medications and vaccines.

READ: South Korea reaches deals to buy more COVID-19 vaccines for 23 million people

However, she said the KDCA is not allowing health workers to combine vaccines left in different bottles to create more doses.

The KDCA had previously authorized 10 injections for each AstraZeneca vial and six for each Pfizer vial.

South Korea, which launched its public vaccination campaign on Friday, is administering the AstraZeneca shots to residents and workers at long-term care facilities and the Pfizer ones to front-line medical workers.

South Korea on Saturday reported another 405 coronavirus cases.

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Source: AP/vc

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