WHO warns of shortages in vaccine syringes

The World Health Organization (WHO) warned Tuesday that there could be a shortage of vaccine syringes in 2022.

WHO expert Lisa Hedman said at a United Nations briefing that 6.8 billion coronavirus vaccine doses had been administered, exceeding the total production capacity of six billion vaccine syringes last year, Reuters reported.

If manufacturing priorities are not changed, there could be two billion vaccine syringes missing worldwide by 2022.

“We could be short of syringes around the world, which in turn could lead to serious problems like slowing vaccination efforts and safety concerns,” Hedman said.

“If we are moving capacity from one type of syringe to another, or trying to expand the capacity for specialized syringes, it takes time and investment,” she added.

A shortage of syringes could lead to delays in routine childhood vaccinations and other procedures, according to Reuters.

A shortage could also lead countries, particularly poorer countries, to reuse syringes in unsafe ways, Hedman said.

The WHO expert’s comments come as Europe experiences a fourth wave of coronavirus cases.

WHO Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge called The US must learn from the fourth wave of Europe and put coronavirus restrictions in place if the country begins to see spikes in cases.

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