Los Angeles County leaders Thursday evening issued a statement clarifying an apparently confusing rule in the county’s vaccine plan: that healthcare providers should not throw away doses of COVID-19 vaccine that they opened for people who don’t show up for their appointments.
“The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health does not condone wasting of any precious vaccine doses and has not and is not directing providers to throw away unused doses,” officials said in the statement. “In fact, we have moved swiftly to set up vaccine clinics on quick turnaround whenever we have learned of potential vaccine expirations.”
The statement comes after two TMZ stories about a clinic in Inglewood that provided 150 doses of vaccine to people who didn’t meet the county’s criteria for vaccination.
Presently, L.A. County is using a tiered vaccination rollout plan, dictated by state health officials, that prioritizes healthcare workers and residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. (Although the state expanded criteria to allow for residents 65 and older to be vaccinated, L.A. County officials have said they aren’t yet taking the step, in part, because they don’t have enough doses.)
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