UTSHC takes responsibility for children who were vaccinated at site

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — FOX13 is learning more about the events that led up to two children getting vaccinated last month.

During the state’s review of vaccine mismanagement, officials said two kids under 16 got shots even though the shot isn’t approved for children.

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Vaccine site officials said the two kids are doing well and they’re owning up to the mistake.

“Any error, any mistake in my business is unacceptable. You know we want 100 percent quality,” said Dean Scott Strome, Dean of the UTHSC College of Medicine.

The incident happened on February 3 at the Appling vaccination site which is run by University Clinical-Health. The site is affiliated with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.

Strome said the mother was able to make appointments for two children.

But at the time, he said information like birthdates and ages weren’t required to make an appointment.

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“There were procedural things that should have been done to catch this that obviously did not and we’ll own that,” said Strome.

The mishap was first reported publicly by Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey when she announced the state was reviewing vaccine mismanagement by the county health department.

Strome didn’t say why the volunteer gave the two children vaccine despite their young ages.

But he said there are now changes in place to prevent this from happening again including multiple encounters with volunteers before you get that shot.

“Then you’re greeted by a second person who takes all of your particulars down, that’s then revalidated before you get vaccinated,” said Strome. “It’s multiple checks and balances to make certain to the best of our ability we don’t make an error.”

City data shows the Appling site is vaccinating the most people in our community and represented about 21 percent of total doses last week.