With weather changes comes the inevitable start to flu season, if you are still debating whether to get your flu shot or not this year, here are some truths you should know about getting vaccinated. Susana Victoria Perez has more.
Ten people at a care facility for people with intellectual disabilities were hospitalized Wednesday after they were injected with insulin rather than the flu vaccine.
The incident took place at the Jacquelyn House in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, about 40 miles north of Tulsa, after multiple people were found unresponsive, said Bartlesville Police Chief Tracy Roles.
Eight residents and two staff members were all hospitalized following the incident, but have since been released or will be soon.
Roles said that a licensed pharmacist was contracted by the facility to administer the vaccine. The pharmacist is cooperating with police and state officials, but investigators believe it was an accident.
Jamie Dukes from the Oklahoma State Department of Health told USA TODAY in an email that the pharmacist supplied the medication from a third-party pharmacy, and that staff at the facility are not responsible in any way for the error.
“At this point there is no indication that the facility should have held a reasonable suspicion this sort of error could occur, and that this was a preventable error in the normal sense,” he wrote.
“I’ve never seen where there’s been some sort of medical misadventure to this magnitude,” Roles said. “It could have been worse. Not to downplay where we are, but thinking of where we could be, it certainly could have been very tragic.”
In September, 16 Indianapolis students were injected with insulin during a skin test for tuberculosis. They were hospitalized out of an abundance of caution.
Insulin is naturally occurring to regulate blood sugar levels, per the Mayo Clinic, but it is typically administered to individuals with diabetes. An excess of insulin can cause low blood sugar, resulting in sweating, nervousness, hunger and irritability, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Contributing: The Associated Press. Follow Joshua Bote on Twitter: @joshua_bote
Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2019/11/08/flu-shots-insulin-oklahoma-10-hospitalized/2529395001/