The Scottish Government must urgently clear up guidance and publish weekly statistics on vaccine wastage, Jackie Baillie has said.
At First Minister’s Questions, the interim Scottish Labour leader warned: “We know that doctors, vaccinators, cannot work in the dark on these issues and we cannot risk any doses being thrown away because the guidance from Government is either slow or unclear.”
Ms Baillie pressed the First Minister to ensure GP surgeries and mass vaccination centres have a reserve list of high-risk patients who can be given vaccines if there is any spare capacity.
Scottish Labour interim leader Jackie Baillie said: “There is nothing more important currently than the rollout of the vaccine.
“We need to fight this virus, and every drop of the vaccine should find its way into people’s arms.”
Responding to the First Minister’s insistence that five per cent wastage was a “worst case scenario”, Ms Baillie said: “Wastage at the weekend was 1.8 per cent. Let me put that in real terms – that’s something like 5,000 doses.”
Calling for clearer guidance, Ms Baillie added: “The First Minister knows the logistical challenges with the Pfizer vaccine and the greater chance of doses being unused. There have been reports in some health boards that vaccines have been binned because of the change in policy on second doses.
“Can the First Minister assure the chamber that any unused vaccines that cannot be used for the priority groups, can be provided as second doses for healthcare professionals, something called for by the BMA?”