by: Jim Bradley Updated:
MOORESVILLE, N.C. - A Mooresville woman said her daughter was given the wrong flu shot at a local pharmacy and she may not have been alone.
Walgreens and the drug's manufacturer are trying to find out what went wrong.
Walgreens admits it had problems at the store in Mooresville after a 15-year-old was given the flu vaccine Flucelvax that the Federal Drug Administration only approved for those over 18.
But the company has yet to say whether the apparent mixup happened at other stores too.
A woman who doesn’t want to be identified said she got a call from Walgreens Sunday telling her that the flu shot in December given to her daughter was the wrong one.
“I was shocked, absolutely shocked,” the mother said.
She said Walgreens called to ask if her daughter had had any unusual side effects.
No one at Walgreens or at Novartis, the company that manufactures the flu shot 'flucelvax' would say what side effects are possible for a child who's been given the vaccine.
“I don’t know why they were even giving it if it hadn't been approved (for a 15 year old),” she said.
The FDA said Monday that its age restrictions are clear including on the drug’s website and package instructions.
Jesse Pike, who runs his own independent pharmacy in Charlotte, said paying attention to FDA labeling is essential.
“There are different potencies for different age groups, definitely,” Pike said.
Late Monday, Walgreens apologized, saying, "We recently learned that a very small percentage of vaccinations may have been administered to patients outside of FDA-approved age ranges."
“I'm glad somebody contacted me because I would never have known. And there's other people out there that may not know,” the mother said.
The manufacturer of the flu shot said it was contacted last week by multiple Walgreens stores asking for clarification on the age range for the vaccine.
When Channel 9 asked Walgreens, a spokesman declined to say how many people or stores were involved but insisted anyone impacted has been contacted.
Any consumers with questions or concerns following vaccination should contact their health care provider. Further, any consumer with questions about Novartis Vaccines should call Novartis Vaccines Direct at 877-NV-DIRECT (877-683-4732) and press one for Medical Communications.