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Stanford gives COVID vaccine to non-frontline staff, researchers in new distribution snafu

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    STANFORD, California (KPIX ) — Stanford University is facing a new round of criticism over its handling of the COVID vaccine rollout after non-clinical and non-frontline staff and researchers were reportedly able to receive the vaccine following miscommunication about a purported excess of supply vaccines available.

The Stanford Daily reported the non-clinical staff received the vaccine last weekend at Stanford Hospital atrium on a walk-in basis, though it was unclear how many.

Hospital affiliates had mistakenly shared information on email and social media that Stanford Medicine had an “excess” supply of vaccinations and that faculty and students could walk in and receive vaccines, according to the report.

Two weeks ago, Stanford doctors and nurses protested the initial rollout of coronavirus vaccinations after some staffers in close contact with patients were passed over while other senior staff working from home and staffers in other specialties were able to get vaccinated.

At the time, Stanford apologized for the “errors in the execution of our vaccine distribution plan” and said it would revise the plan to better sequence the vaccine’s rollout.

A spokeswoman told KPIX 5 that Stanford Medicine has addressed the issue and that going forward it was confident the vaccination process would be “ethical and equitable.”

Across the country, health systems like Stanford Medicine are working hard to rapidly vaccinate their healthcare workforce under unprecedented conditions, said spokeswoman Lisa Kim. “Unfortunately, this past weekend, inaccurate information regarding vaccine availability circulated within our community, leading some ineligible employees to receive a vaccination. At this time, Stanford Medicine is administering vaccines only to patient-facing health care workers.”

According to Stanford Medicine’s vaccine dashboard, non-clinical affiliates can be vaccinated beginning on January 8 but only after all hospital, ambulatory and other clinical staff have been vaccinated.

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