The East-Flanders public prosecutor’s office has opened an investigation into an incident with a used syringe in the vaccination centre of Evergem last weekend.
Last Saturday, an employee of the vaccination centre allegedly put an empty syringe back in a box of vaccines to be used – as a joke. A colleague later reused the syringe on an 11-year-old girl and only then noticed that the syringe was empty.
“The public prosecutor’s office was informed of this and started an investigation for ‘unintentional bodily harm’,” the prosecutor announced in a press release on Monday. “A number of people still need to be questioned. The investigation is ongoing.”
Additionally, the girl’s parents were immediately informed about the incident and the girl herself is being closely monitored medically.
“The vaccinators involved were immediately placed on non-active,” Evergem mayor Joeri De Maertelaere said on local radio. “Reusing a used needle can have medical consequences. Therefore, as a precaution, a blood sample was taken to be able to monitor the medical condition properly.”
According to De Maertelaere, the parents will now have to live in uncertainty for up to six months until it becomes clear that there would be no consequences. “It is a very unpleasant situation. The vaccination centre has done a very good job over the past year. The vaccinators were people with a lot of experience, who had already spent many hours working at the centre.”