FDA warns of needle-free flu shots

The Food and Drug Administration recently warned doctors, nurses and pharmacists about the painless, needle-free shots that many pharmacies are offering for the first time because they have yet to be FDA-approved.

PharmaJet, a Colorado-based company that manufacturers the high-pressure injector device, has been marketing it as a proven flu-fighting tool. While the device has been approved for use with some drugs, the FDA said that flu vaccines are out of the question, ABC News reports.

“The FDA has no data to support the safety or effectiveness (of flu vaccines delivered by jet injector)," the alert reads, according to ABC News.

“Vaccines are labeled with specific instructions for how those vaccines should be administered,” Shelley Burgess, an FDA spokeswoman, said, according to ABC News. “At this time, there are no vaccines for the prevention of influenza disease that are approved by the FDA for administration by jet injector.”

Heather Potters, the chairman of PharmaJet, said that company representatives have contacted top FDA officials to protest the move. Potters said there is nothing in FDA policy forbidding medical professionals from using the injection device for flu vaccination. She insist the injectors have been used for decades to successfully vaccinate people against multiple diseases, including influenza.

Kroger Pharmacy, a large pharmacy chain that had been offering the PharmaJet injection to customers at some of its locations, announced on Friday that it had "immediately discontinued use of such clinical devices" at its pharmacies.

“Kroger is seeking guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Food and Drug Administration regarding revaccinations,” a prepared statement released by the company said, according to ABC News.