Sask. health to investigate after Qu'Appelle House vaccine recipients drawn at random
REGINA -- The Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) will review a scenario that saw vaccine recipients determined by a random draw at a Regina care facility.
During Tuesday’s live COVID-19 update, Scott Livingstone, CEO of the SHA, addressed the issue, originally brought forward by the Saskatchewan NDP on Tuesday morning.
Livingstone explained that Regina’s Qu’Appelle House happened to have some extra doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. The plan was to vaccinate long-term residents, but staff made the choice to give the extra vaccinations to its assisted living residents, who weren’t slated to get the vaccine just yet.
“The assisted living side would not have been expecting to receive doses, because they’re not in the initial priority group,” he said. “But they are within Phase One.”
Livingstone said that the decision was made by staff to administer the additional vaccines to assisted living residents. He said that with respect to the Pfizer vaccine, a decision had to be made, given the product has to remain frozen and cannot be sent back. He said health care workers would not want to waste the product by not administering it in time.
The NDP originally alleged that 15 residents at the care home were told Monday that they would not be getting their vaccinations, after being told in the morning that all the care home residents would be vaccinated.
“The public health nurses had vaccine vials with them but they were informed by a manager that they could not administer those doses to my mother and other residents in one part of the building that was not considered longterm care,” Janet Craig, whose mother lives at Qu’Appelle House, said in a release.
Craig said nurses were able to vaccinate six of the 15 people, which Livingstone confirmed. She alleged names were drawn from a hat to determine who would get vaccinated. This left nine residents who share the same facility not vaccinated.
“We are asking that we see some kind of policy, anything that says what happens when there are too many doses and what happens when there are too few,” Nicole Sarauer, Deputy Leader of the Opposition, said. “Have the cohorts changed? Why are key groups being left in the dark on when they will receive the vaccination. Surely we can do better than drawing names from a hat.”