Vaccines against pneumonia to be distributed to Norwegian municipalities

Ingvild KjerkolPhoto: Terje Bendiksby / NTB

The surplus stock of vaccines against pneumonia will be sent to Norwegian municipalities so that they can be used before they expire.

Before Easter, it became known that the National Institute of Public Health (FHI) had 50,000 doses of pneumococcal vaccines in stock. The vaccines are set to expire in June.

The Conservatives (H) demanded that the vaccines be distributed so that they could be used instead of being destroyed. On Tuesday, Minister of Health and Care Services Ingvild Kjerkol (AP) confirmed that the vaccines would be sent to the municipalities.

Pandemic effect

“The FHI has purchased sufficient vaccines, but due to the pandemic, fewer pneumococcal vaccines have been administered than expected. Some vaccines will therefore expire if they are not used quickly,” Kjerkol wrote in answer to the Norwegian parliament (Storting), answering questions from the Conservative Party’s (H) Sveinung Stensland.

“The FHI was therefore notified on April 4 to distribute the doses that expire in June 2022, free of charge, to municipalities so that these vaccines can be used,” she added.

The FHI has extra vaccines in stock due to previous shortages. In the spring of 2020, the FHI recommended that everyone over the age of 65 be vaccinated against pneumonia, which led to high demand and stocks running out. In 2021, the FHI decided to secure a larger stock of these vaccines, according to Dagens Medisin, which first mentioned the case.

However, the corona pandemic and mass vaccination with repeated booster doses led to a halt in pneumococcal vaccination. 

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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