Dos And Don'ts When Monitoring The Temperature Of Stored Vaccines
Storing vaccines can be a wonderful thing. It can prevent waste and ensure that valuable vaccines go to kids and others who need them. However, sometimes storing a vaccine can be a complicated process. Simplify things by being as careful as possible to follow all local, state and federal guidelines regarding the safe handling of vaccines. Also, be sure to follow these dos and don'ts when monitoring the temperature of stored vaccines:
Do Keep a Log and Post it on the Door of the Storage Unit
It's important to keep a written log of the temperatures that are checked in the vaccine storage unit. Also, place it on the storage unit door so anybody else. That's a must, and it allows others who have access to the unit to easily assess the recent history of temperatures in the unit.
When you are keeping a log, remember that details are key. You should record the time whenever you read each thermometer. Also, be sure to record the minimum and maximum temperatures that are taken each day. Always initial the things you record in the log even if you are the only one who has access to the log. It's important to keep a clear record.
Don't Store Food or Beverages in Vaccine Storage Units
Those who are checking the temperature of the vaccines in storage may feel that they can do as they need with extra fridge space. They may want to store food. After all, most people associate refrigerators and freezers with food storage. That is what pretty much everyone has in their house to store their perishable food and drinks in.
It can be tempting for some workers to toss a lunch in the fridge when they plan on consuming it later. However, that's strictly forbidden. According to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Division of Epidemiology and Immunization Vaccines for Children Program, food and beverages should not be stored in the same units that store vaccines.
Do Use a Certified Thermometer and Have Back-Ups Available
You need to use a certified thermometer every single time you check the temperature in the vaccine storage unit. That's important for each compartment. Having at least one backup certified thermometer is crucial as well.
Finally, keep in mind that vaccine storage can be a great service to the makers of the vaccine and those who need them. In fact, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, proper vaccine storage helps safeguard people from vaccine-preventable diseases. Properly monitor the vaccines' temperature by following all federal and state guidelines to keep them safe to administer.
Contact local vaccine storage services for more information and assistance.