While Biontech’s corona vaccine is in high demand, some vaccine doses from Moderna and Johnson & Johnson end up in the garbage. The Nuremberg vaccination center is also affected by this situation, said the head of the vaccination coordination office of the city of Nuremberg, Rolf Rabenstein, on the Bavarian radio.
Limited durability of Moderna an issue
“In the last few weeks, no Biontech vaccination dose has expired in Nuremberg,” said Rabenstein. Excess Biontech vaccine is given to general practitioners in Nuremberg. According to Rabenstein, doctors in private practice have received around 400 vaccine vials in the past few weeks. The Moderna vaccine, on the other hand, is not accepted by family doctors. Because the vaccines are delivered thawed, they have a limited shelf life. Vaccines from Moderna and Johnson & Johnson therefore have to be disposed of again and again.
Logistical challenge for general practitioners
family doctor dr Tilman Gothner from Lonnerstadt in the district of Neustadt an der Aisch-Bad Windsheim confirms the problem. While enough vaccine from Moderna is available, he has problems with the deliveries of the much more popular Biontech vaccine. Because the vaccine is only delivered thawed to the doctor’s office, the vaccine can sometimes only be kept for two weeks by the doctors before it has to be vaccinated. This is an almost impossible logistical challenge for the practice teams.
Vaccinations with general practitioners are difficult to plan
He would also like to be able to order the Biontech vaccine more quickly. “We always have to see how many vaccinees we have, how many interested parties and then we make appointments. The patients want to be able to plan, but this is not possible because we have to see week by week how much is actually delivered,” says the doctor . “There’s a lot of sand in the gears,” says Gothner. The ordering process is “incredibly bureaucratic” and he can vaccinate the amount of Biontech doses he receives per week in one day. He would like a possibility for individual and short-term online orders. So far, orders have had to be ordered two weeks in advance and with uncertainty about the actual delivery quantities.
General Practitioners Association criticizes vaccine distribution key
The doctor regrets that Moderna’s vaccine keeps ending up in the garbage. “It’s a shame and makes us sad that many believe that Moderna is an inferior vaccine, which in fact is not the case.” The chairman of the Bavarian Association of General Practitioners, Dr. Markus Beier from Erlangen criticizes the current distribution strategy for the vaccines: “The distribution key is very problematic for doctors in private practice, because only the smallest quantities of Biontech are delivered there and vaccination centers and medical care centers can order many times over. As a family doctor’s association, we have been complaining about this injustice for months”. , according to Beier.
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