10 people hospitalized in Oklahoma after insulin given instead of flu shots
© Getty Images

Ten people in Oklahoma were hospitalized after being injected with insulin instead of a flu shot, local authorities confirmed to CNN.

Eight of the patients were residents of Jacquelyn House, a facility that serves intellectually and developmentally disabled people, according to the website of AbilityWorks, the company that owns the Bartlesville, Okla., facility.

The other two patients were employees of the facility.


Emergency medical and fire crews arrived at the facility Wednesday after being told that one person was unresponsive after receiving the shot. When authorities arrived, they found multiple unresponsive people, Bartlesville Police Department Chief Tracy Roles told a local ABC affiliate Wednesday.

Roles praised the emergency authorities for their work with the patients at the home, who “were not able to explain the issue” because “many of them are not vocal and not able to walk,” CNN reported.

“All of these people are symptomatic, lying on the ground. Needing help, but they can’t communicate what they need, and that’s why I give a lot of praise to the fire and EMS staff for doing an outstanding job of identifying the problem,” Roles said.

All 10 of the affected people were taken to Jane Phillips Hospital. Several remained hospitalized Thursday because they were administered long-acting insulin, CNN reported. No fatalities were reported.

“I’ve never seen where there’s been some sort of medical misadventure to this magnitude, but again it could have been a lot worse, and not to downplay where we are, but thinking about where we could be it certainly could have been very, very tragic.” 

The person who administered the insulin was reportedly a 40-year veteran pharmacist who was contracted to give flu shots at the home. Tony D. Sellars, director of communications for the Oklahoma State Department of Health, told there was “no reason to suggest” that the facility was at fault.  

An investigation was underway Thursday, CNN reported.

The Hill has reached out to the Bartlesville Police Department for comment.