A fraudster claiming to work for the National Health Service (NHS) injected a 92-year-old woman with a fake Covid-19 vaccine, according to the City of London Police.
Detectives are hunting the man who talked his way into the woman’s home in south London.
Detective Inspector Kevin Ives described it as a “disgusting and totally unacceptable assault”. He appealed for information to help identify the suspect.
It comes after the NHS warned people, following a spate of fake text messages, that no official healthcare personnel would ever turn up at doorsteps offering a vaccine for payment.
Under the current coronavirus vaccine rollout plans, people will be invited to receive the vaccine by their GP or healthcare provider.
Police said the victim allowed the man into her home on the afternoon of December 30 after he said he was from the NHS and was there to administer the Covid-19 vaccine.
She said the man stuck a “dart-like implement” in her arm. He then charged her £160 (RM800), which he said would be refunded by the NHS.
The police said it was not known what substance, if any, he injected into the woman but she was thoroughly examined at her local hospital and showed no ill effects.
The man made a second visit to the woman’s home on Jan 4, when he asked for another £100 (RM550), Ives said.
The police issued a statement saying, “It is crucial we catch this man as soon as possible as not only is he defrauding vulnerable people of money, he may endanger people’s lives.”
A spokesman for the Department of Health said: “NHS England will never ask for bank details, pins or passwords, when contacting you about a vaccination.
“Any communication which claims to be from the NHS but asks for payment, or bank details, is fraudulent.
“No-one in Britain will ever be charged for a vaccination.”