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'Temperature excursion' causes issue with some Moderna vaccine shipments to Texas, health officials say

The Texas Hospital Association said an unknown number of shipments could not be used, and the federal government shipped replacement doses.
Credit: Matt McNew
The Moderna vaccine at Children's Health in Dallas.

Last week, there were five shipments of the Moderna vaccine to Texas could not be used due to "temperature excursion," meaning the holding temperature was outside the recommended range, state health officials say. 

The Texas Department of Health and Human Services said the federal government shipped replacements, which totaled 4,300 doses, to the facilities affected by the issue. 

A temperature excursion is defined as "any temperature reading outside ranges recommended in the manufacturers’ package inserts," according to the CDC.

DSHS says providers that received the replacement shipments were directed "to separate the questionable vaccine into a vaccine quarantine bag and store them in the freezer until viability has been determined by Moderna."  

The Moderna vaccine was first delivered in the state during the second week of distribution, starting on Dec. 21. 

DSHS was notified on Dec. 23 that Moderna shipments, totaling 144,400 doses were going to be delayed, but did not give a reason for the delay. 

As of Dec. 30, almost 680,000 doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have been shipped to providers in Texas, according to the state dashboard.