Memphis officials take over a county’s troubled COVID-19 vaccination program
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February 27, 2021 | 2:39am | Updated February 27, 2021 | 2:46am

The city of Memphis, Tennessee took over COVID-19 vaccination efforts in one county after reports of widespread mismanagement — including precious vials being stolen, wasted or diverted for unauthorized use.

Investigators with the Tennessee Department of Health were in Shelby County looking into mismanagement of the vaccine when they learned a volunteer allegedly stole multiple doses at the Pipkin Building on Feb. 3, said Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey, WMC-TV reported.

The Shelby County Health Department said it removed the volunteer after receiving reports of “suspicious behavior.”

Law enforcement found there was insufficient evidence to prove the alleged theft, health officials said.

The state notified the FBI about the potential theft.

Additionally, Piercey said another volunteer vaccinated two children who had appointments at the Appling Road site on Feb. 3.

It’s unknown if they received the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines. The vaccines have not been approved for use in children.

The Commercial Appeal also reported that health officials found 2,400 doses had expired throughout the month of February.

Alisa Haushalter, head of the Shelby County Health Department, resigned from her post Friday following the apparent mismanagement.

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