The World Health Organisation issued an alert over fake Covishield vaccine doses. The vaccines were reported to WHO in July and August. Manufacturer Serum Institute of India confirmed that the products listed in the alert are fake.
The fake Covishield doses were first identified in the WHO African Region, and the WHO South-East Asia Region. They were reported from the patient level in Uganda and India.
“Falsified COVID-19 vaccines pose a serious risk to global public health and place an additional burden on vulnerable populations and health systems. It is important to detect and remove these falsified products from circulation to prevent harm to patients,” stated WHO in its alert.
The organisation said that the products identified were confirmed as falsified on the basis of deliberate and fraudulent misrepresentation of the doses’ identity, composition or source. It stated that the expiry date of 10.08.2021 on Batch 4121Z040 is falsified. It also said that some of these bottles are of 2ml. Serum does not produce Covishield in 2ml (4 doses).
WHO urged increased vigilance within the supply chains of countries and regions that are likely to be affected by these falsified products. It asked hospitals, clinics, health centers, wholesalers, distributors, pharmacies, and any other suppliers of medical products to be increasingly vigilant of these fake products.
All medical products must be obtained from authorised or licenced suppliers, and the authenticity and physical condition have to be carefully checked, it said. WHO urged people to not use these fake products in case they are in possession of them.
In case one has used and is suffering from adverse reactions, then they have been advised to seek immediate medical help and report the incident to national regulatory authorities.
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