PALMYRA, Pa. (WHTM) – Like millions of other Americans, Marjorie Beck made an appointment to get her updated booster shot. But when she went to her local pharmacy for it, she never imagined she’d be given the wrong one.
“After the initial shock, I think what I really wanted to know was why did this happen and how did it happen,” Beck said, recalling the phone call from Rite Aid she received on Thursday.
Instead of receiving Pfizer’s COVID-19 booster shot, Beck was given the original one — and she’s far from alone.
Rite Aid of Palmyra said a “limited” number of customers were given the original Pfizer booster rather than the updated one, which was made specifically to tackle the Omicron variant.
Earlier this week we learned that a limited number of customers at this location received the original COVID vaccine rather than the updated (bi-valent) version. We have contacted impacted customers and rescheduled them for the new booster in 60 days in accordance with CDC guidance. We take this matter very seriously, and have taken steps to prevent this from occurring again.Catherine Carter, Rite Aid Manager, Public Relations & External Communications
For Beck, the statement is too little too late.
“I’m immunocompromised, my husband’s immunocompromised. Both of us work with the public every day and we don’t have an option to stay home,” Beck said. “We were really depending on this to move forward into the fall.”
Infectious disease experts, like Dr. John Goldman of UPMC, said the original COVID-19 booster should still provide substantial protection against the virus.
“I would think they’re still going to have very high levels of antibodies and will still be at very low risk of getting COVID-19 or severe COVID-19,” Goldman said.