21st February 2023

Compliant storage for vaccines and medications - Why is it so important?

When seeking to keep vaccines and other medications in optimum condition, temperature monitoring and recording play a vital role. Best practice states that fridge temperatures should be recorded at least twice a day, preferably at either end of the day.

It's a time consuming but essential process. Temperatures have to be recorded and these records kept available and accessible for other staff and for inspection purposes. All premises storing products in fridges must have a standard operating procedure (SOP) in place, with a designated point of contact responsible for the process.

Impacting on the shelf life

It's important to remember that the shelf life of each individual product is based on the assumption of safe and compliant storage procedures. If subjected to temperatures outside recommended ranges, medications can become unstable. They can degrade, with the possibility of subsequent negative side effects at worst, and at best a decrease in effectiveness.

So how can you optimise your refrigeration processes?

There are a number of steps you should take to help improve your own systems.

  • Recognise that your fridge units may have hot or cold spots (typically in the door shelves or next to the ice box) and avoid these areas when storing sensitive products
  • Make sure products do not come into contact with moisture or ice inside the fridge
  • Ensure you have an approved and recognised process for managing any fridge failures (such as alternative storage areas/additional fridge capacity)
  • Where excursions outside your temperature range occur, investigate fully the reasons behind this and establish the potential impact on the products stored there to make informed decisions on their future efficacy

A reliable temperature monitoring system will play an important role in ensuring your processes are always compliant. RemoteM is a totally automated option. It operates 24/7, taking readings every 10 minutes, and is not reliant on local power or WiFi to maintain operations. It even alerts via SMS, email or voice call in the event of a temperature excursion. What's more, you can download comprehensive reports demonstrating the compliance of every fridge for inspection/compliance purposes. More information is available on our How it Works page.