Nurse verbally 'assaulted and threatened' at Christchurch vaccination clinic

Source: 1News

A nurse at a Covid-19 vaccination clinic in Christchurch was verbally assaulted and threatened yesterday prompting security and police intervention.

A police spokesperson told 1 NEWS they were called at about 4.45pm yesterday after a person threatened to assault another at Burwood Hospital.

"The incident related to a disagreement between staff and a person attending a clinic. The person had attempted to take something from a staff member during the disagreement, however they left the scene prior to Police arrival."

Police said no one was injured in the incident and are continuing to make inquiries.

"There is not currently a warrant out for the person's arrest," the spokesperson said but it was unclear if the person was being sought.

Canterbury DHB Executive Lead for Covid-19, Ralph La Salle told 1 NEWS the clinic had 1400 doses of excess Covid-19 vaccine to use up by April 13 but a nurse had posted to social media about its availability at the clinic, leading to an overflow of people seeking to be vaccinated .

"Due to a human error in Canterbury DHB’s ordering, an oversupply of vaccine was delivered to the DHB late last week.

"On Sunday afternoon the Canterbury Health System Covid-19 vaccination team convened and developed a plan to deliver the 1400 excess doses on Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th. Clinics were held at Burwood and Christchurch Hospitals on Monday and Tuesday which saw all 1400 of the excess doses used," La Salle said. 

"Canterbury DHB was made aware on Monday April 12 that a post was made on social media by a nurse about additional vaccines being available. We don’t know who this nurse is, but we can confirm it’s not someone directly involved with the Canterbury vaccine rollout.

"No-one from Canterbury DHB authorised this social media post as we were not planning to have ‘walk in’ clinics for the public, as was encouraged by the social media post," he said. 

"Canterbury DHB had a plan to use the surplus vaccinations and it did not require public advertising, as the planned recipients were our own staff, along with frontline primary care staff (general practice teams and community pharmacy staff).

"At present the DHB’s Covid-19 vaccination clinics are only for people with pre-booked appointments.

"People who received the ‘excess’ vaccine on Monday and Tuesday were mostly primary healthcare workers (general practice and community pharmacy), Canterbury DHB healthcare workers (2a or 2b) and household contacts of border workers (Tier 1b), La Salle said.

"I cannot stress enough, that there will be enough vaccine for everyone, and there is a priority order for vaccinations to ensure those most at risk are vaccinated first."

La Salle said the DHB was focused on "supporting our staff member".