Sydney, Australia, Feb 24 (efe-epa).- Two elderly care home residents in the Australian city of Brisbane are being monitored after mistakenly receiving up to four times the recommended dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, authorities said Wednesday.
Neither of the patients, aged 94 and 88, were showing adverse reactions to the doses given Tuesday, said Australian Health Minister Greg Hunt Wednesday, adding that authorities are investigating the incident.
Hunt said that “it hasn’t been confirmed, because it’s actually really hard to be able to tell what was in the needle, but it couldn’t have been more than [four times the recommended dose].”
The doctor who administered the vaccine is being investigated and has been removed from the national inoculation program against Covid-19, which officially began on Monday with the distribution of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine to essential workers and residents of aged care homes.
Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly said that when experiments were conducted during clinical trials of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine at doses including four times the prescribed amount, “the side effect data was not a high problem.”
Kelly reiterated that similar cases of vaccine overdose have occurred in aged care homes in Germany and the United Kingdom, where the “side effect profile was minimal, particularly in the older people.”
Australia, which has approved the Pfizer/BioNTech and AstraZeneca vaccines so far, has recorded about 29,900 cases of Covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, including 909 deaths, most of them due to the outbreak in the city of Melbourne, in mid-2020. EFE-EPA