Information on Expired vaccines

OIA response

Thank you for your request dated 30 January 2024 under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) for information relating to expired vaccines. You requested:

All expired vaccines listed by type of vaccine, number of doses expired per vaccine, and value of expired stock, for the calendar year of 2023 (January 1-December 31, 2023).

Specifically, I am seeking a breakdown of all expired funded vaccine stock purchased by Pharmac and held at the National and Regional Vaccine Stores.

You will find the information you requested at the end of this letter. Please note the following:

  • These numbers only include funded vaccine stock purchased by Pharmac and held at the National and Regional Vaccine Stores. It does not include private market vaccine stock, or the influenza vaccines, nor funded stock expired at vaccinators or returned from vaccinators to the stores.
  • The date of destruction of the stock is recorded. This is either the date of expiry or shortly thereafter.
  • Expired stock was destroyed for various reasons including being damaged, cold chain failure and expiry. Stock is usually destroyed on or immediately after expiry, the specific reason for destruction is not recorded.
  • Refunds from suppliers were obtained for some expired stock where stock was purchased on a sale or return basis.
  • Some figures in the table provided may have changed from those previously provided due to confirmation of the date of destruction.

Additionally, these prices do not reflect confidential prices. Where confidential prices apply, the actual purchase price paid is lower. Details of confidential prices are withheld under the following grounds of the OIA:

  • section 9(2)(b)(ii), to protect the commercial position of the person who supplied the information, or who is the subject of the information
  • section 9(2)(j), to enable negotiations to be carried on without prejudice or disadvantage

Under Pharmac’s contract negotiation model, the actual prices paid for products are considered commercially sensitive and their disclosure would impact Pharmac’s ability to negotiate for products in the future. Pharmac therefore needs to balance the need to respect the confidential or sensitive nature of information it holds, while seeking to achieve transparency and ensuring it complies with its legal obligations.

In making our decision, we have considered the public interest considerations in section 9(1) of the Act. No public interest has been identified that would be sufficient to override the reasons for withholding that information.

We trust that this information answers your queries. Please note, you have the right to make a complaint to the Ombudsman about our response to your OIA, under section 28(3) of the OIA. Details of how to make a complaint(external link) are on the Ombudsman’s website.

To make information more freely available, we publish selected OIA responses (excluding personal details) on our website. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions about this.