Nearly 600 doses of COVID vaccines went to waste in a processing error at a hospital in Lawrence, Kansas, according to local health officials.

Lawrence Memorial Hospital had to throw away 570 doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine after they were received from the Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health one day earlier.

The vaccine was already thawed at the time of delivery when doses typically arrive frozen and are placed in a hospital freezer until they can be administered to shot recipients. Lawrence Memorial Hospital said it followed standard protocol only to realize that it had received the vaccines in a thawed state, it said in a press release.

“When we discovered the vaccines had been delivered to the hospital in a refrigerated state, LMH Health immediately reached out to Johnson & Johnson for guidance," Brian Bradfield, LMH Health associate vice president of ancillary services, said in the statement. "The company advised these doses will have to be discarded.”

LMH Health President & CEO Russ Johnson said the hospital is reviewing its procedures to prevent future errors.

“Although this is a small percentage of the overall vaccines that the county has received, we know it is not insignificant," he said. "This is a heart-wrenching situation for our hospital, our Phase 2 community members and our Unified Command partners.”

He continued by saying, "We have had a nearly flawless process to date and we will determine where our processes failed and fix them."

The hospital is working to procure replacement doses of the vaccine with state and local health departments, Bradfield said. LMH Health and the Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health is also rescheduling appointments for individuals affected, most likely at a local fairgrounds site for next week.

This is not the first time that COVID vaccines have gone to waste. There have been several incidents where doses had to be discarded due to temperature issues because of transport or storage errors.

In Knox County, Tennessee, 975 doses of the Pfizer vaccine were accidentally discarded when they were mistaken for dry ice.

In another instance in Michigan, 11,900 doses of the Moderna vaccine were ruined due to a temperature control issue during delivery. And in Maine, 4,400 doses of the Moderna shot spoiled after they were not refrigerated after delivery.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it has fully vaccinated over 33.8 million people as of Friday morning.

On Thursday evening, President Biden announced in a nationwide address that he was directing all states, tribes, and territories to open eligibility of the COVID vaccine to all U.S. adults by May 1.

Syringes with doses of the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine await recipients at a vaccination site at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza on March 11, 2021 in Los Angeles, California Syringes with doses of the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine await recipients at a vaccination site at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza on March 11, 2021 in Los Angeles, California Photo: AFP / Patrick T. FALLON