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16/11/2023

5 best practices for vaccine storage in a pharmacy fridge

Mercatus
2 Minute Read

The effectiveness of vaccines unfortunately cannot be guaranteed if the vaccine hasn't been stored correctly.

  1. Store the vaccines in the original packaging, ensuring batch numbers and expiry date information are preserved. Mercatus Bioscience medicine drawers have been designed with this in mind. The drawers have large capacity with a variable arrangement of height, depth and width allowing you to organise drawers around size and shape of original packaging.
  2. Ensure compliance with the specific manufacturer summary of each vaccine which typically means protecting the vaccines from light and storing them at temperatures between +2ºC to +8ºC. A midpoint of +5ºC should be the aim. That is why Mercatus Bioscience cabinets have that exact temperature range, each factory set to work at +5ºC set point.
  3. Allow for sufficient airflow around the vaccine packages, that's why Mercatus Bioscience cooling system was optimised to grant uniform and stable cooling.
  4. Keep vaccines away from the back walls and side walls of the refrigerator to protect against potential freezing which could render the vaccines from being unusable. However this is not a concern if Mercatus Bioscience pharmacy refrigerators are used. They have been designed so that products are kept inside drawers, which act as a barrier from the back and side walls of cabinets. This eases day-to-day handling and helps operators to optimise internal capacity without fear of spoilage.
  5. Maintain vaccine stock, rotating within the refrigerator so those expiring first are used first. It may be beneficial to designate different vaccines to different areas of the fridge so that staff know where each vaccine is stored. Labels on the outside door can help and reduce the amount of time that the fridge door is open. Each Mercatus Bioscience pharmaceutical refrigerator comes with dividers (landes and horizontal) that allow better organisation inside each drawer and product separation. Also, each lane divider has the option to stick a label in the front of each drawer so as to allow it to be correctly labelled.

Two individuals must be nominated to oversee the ordering and care of any vaccines on site. This includes ensuring they are stored promptly and accurately, and that cold chain is always adhered to. Monitoring the vaccines regularly should also avoid shortages, stockpiling and over-ordering which reduces the risk of administering out of date vaccines, ensures efficient fridge storage and airflow, and decreases waste and the cost of vaccine disposal. All Mercatus pharmaceutical cabinets have been carefully designed to allow airflow making sure that each drawer is refrigerated uniformly.

Our team of experts at Mercatus Bioscience have developed Dialog IoT in house, which allows 24/7 monitoring of the cabinets performance and ambient conditions. All Acura models feature Dialog IoT as standard and a built-in-battery backup that immediately alters users via email and notification in the event of a power shortage.