GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA)—Unused doses of the COVID-19 vaccine are set to expire over the next several months. 7News has learned more than 1,400 doses of the Pfizer shot will go bad on Saturday. Local doctors say they’ve been dealing with working through expiring doses more now than previously in the pandemic.
Grace Eubanks and her brother Noah both got their first Pfizer shot on Friday.
“Our parents and they wanted us to go get vaccinated to see children that we know,” 18-year-old Noah said.
“A lot of people around us are getting very nervous about the variant, so they’ve been telling us we should get vaccinated if we want to see them,” 15-year-old Grace said.
For Grace, because of her age, it was her only option.
“We had a hard time finding the Pfizer so we were really lucky to get this dose,” she said.
But hundreds of doses of the Pfizer vaccine will expire on Saturday, and more than 17,000 more are set to go bad by the end of august.
“The demand for the vaccine has gone down over the last few months, now the state is sitting on a bunch of unused doses that are going to go bad. Which is a really unfortunate thing given how hard everyone has worked to get the vaccine ready,” Dr. Brian Blank at Ember Modern Medicine said.
Dr. Blank says they work hard to make sure they’re not ordering more doses than they need from the state.
“We keep careful track of when all of the vaccines are expiring, because they do tend to expire fairly quickly,” Dr. Blank said.
That’s why he says it’s encouraging to see people still coming in.
“So the more we can get out and get our friends and family vaccinated the better,” he said.
For Grace and Noah, it’s about protecting those around them.
“I definitely will be more excited to go out and check out the new area,” Noah said.
And doing their part.
“I think that’s a waste because we’re really privileged to have a vaccine,” Grace said.
DHEC says the state can share unused doses with other states by going through the CDC, but they cannot, at this time, share with other countries.
You can find an available vaccine near you by heading to the DHEC online locator.