Patients potentially injected with saline instead of Pfizer vaccine at Melbourne GP clinic

A GP clinic in Melbourne's east has potentially injected dozens of patients with saline solution instead of the Pfizer vaccine by mistake.

Deepdene Surgery confirmed the error today, revealing as a result of the mistake, as many as 30 people "may or may not have received the vaccine" on Sunday, September 26.

The clinic said patients who did not receive the vaccine would have been injected with saline (a salt solution) during appointments between 1pm and 1.30pm on Sunday.

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"The saline did not contain any vaccines or drugs," the clinic said.

"An injection of saline does not cause any harm."

Only patients who attended appointments during the 30-minute time frame may have been affected.

The error was identified at 1.30pm that day and the COVID-19 Response Team at the Department of Health and Surveillance of Adverse Effects (SAFEVIC) was contacted.

SAFEVIC met with the clinic on September 29, with the clinic stating it was following the department's advice.

As of yesterday, the clinic was still in the process of contacting the affected people.

"Deepdene Surgery has protocols in place to prevent errors," the clinic said.

"Unfortunately, an error occurred, as empty vaccine vials were used for preparing some of the syringes intended for vaccination."

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The clinic apologised for the mistake but assured it had not caused any physical harm.

"This error has not caused any physical harm to these affected people," they said.

"However we acknowledge this may have caused worry or distress and we apologise for that.

"We at Deepdene Surgery are very sorry this has occurred and have reviewed our processes to avoid this from happening again."

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