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Potential improper vaccine storage prompts need to repeat shots in Northwest B.C.

Northern Health contacting more than 400 people who received shots since last October
The Northern Health Authority is contacting approximately 425 people to repeat vaccinations. (File photo)

More than 400 people in Terrace, Stewart and surrounding First Nations received vaccines stored at higher than recommended temperatures between October 2022 and November of this year, reports the Northern Health Authority.

No COVID-19 or flu doses were among the affected vaccines.

While health officials say there is no risk to patients’ health, they are recommending those who did receive these vaccines should receive them again.

“It may mean they didn’t get the full benefit to their immune system if they received a potentially non-viable dose,” said Dr. Jon Kim, Northern Health’s chief medical officer.

Affected vaccines were administered at the Terrace health unit, at the Stewart Health Centre and clinics in Kitsumkalum, Kitselas, Iskut, Gitlaxt’amiks, Gitwinksihlkw, Gingolx, Laxgalts’ap, Gitanyow and Gitwangak.

Northern Health officials will be contacting those who did receive affected vaccines to schedule, if necessary, appointments for revaccination.

Approximately 425 people should have shots administered over again, the health authority said.

“It is important to note not all vaccines administered at these locations were affected by the temperature uncertainties and not all recipients will need revaccination,” the health authority said in a statement Dec. 14.

Special clinics will be held in Terrace beginning next month for those having their vaccinations repeated. There may be earlier starts at other clinics.

Here’s a list of affected vaccines and what they are for:

Boostrix Polio — Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Polio

Rotarix — Human rotavirus

Hep A Havrix — Hepatitis A

ProQuad — Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Varicella (chicken pox)

Varivax — Varicella (chicken pox)

Tubersol — Tuberculin Skin Test (not a vaccine)

Pediacel — Diptheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Polio, Haemophilus Influenzae Type b

Nimenrix — Meningococcal (Groups A,C,Y,W-135)

Pneumo 23 — Pneumococcal 23

Rabavert — Rabies vaccine

Imovax Polio — Polio

Hypertet IG — Tetanus

TD absorbed — Tetanus, Diphtheria

Kamrab IG — Rabies immunoglobulin

Recombivax — Hepatitis B

Varivax — Varicella (chicken pox)

ActHib — Haemophilus Influenzae Type b