Importance of Cold Chain Monitoring in Vaccines

Studies show that more than 30% of total vaccine deliveries get spoiled/ damaged after reaching the destination. What’s the exact reason?

Vaccine cold storage or vaccine carrier holds a prominent place in the safe delivery of vaccines. The vaccines are stored and transported at the right temperature in the cold chain so that their potency can remain intact. Right from the manufacturing of vaccines, this chain starts and ends when the final customer gets it. During this entire journey, delivering vaccines safely and without any damage is not as easy as it seems.

It’s the hard work of many people and technologies that deliver vaccines across the world safely & timely. The strong cold chain is managed properly from beginning to end. But in spite of so many efforts, many times it happens that the vaccines get damaged at the endpoint when these are delivered or during transit.

Here monitoring of cold chains comes into the picture. Monitoring minimizes the chances of damage and saves the efficiency of vaccines till it reaches the final customer. From manufacturing to health care centers, proper supply chain monitoring plays a vital role. But how is it important? Let us dive into all about cold chain monitoring and know about its importance from the very beginning!

Cold Chain Monitoring

Maintenance and monitoring are essential for each piece of equipment. Whether that’s routine maintenance or needing it after fixed intervals, it safeguards the equipment and never lets anything halt its processing.

The cold chains are supposed to keep vaccines intact at the right temperature. It needs preventive maintenance. For optimal functionality of it, proper monitoring and maintenance are required so that effectiveness of vaccines can remain safe to save lives and fight against diseases.

Three points are required to consider here for superior cold chain monitoring and that is:

  • Vaccine storage and handling plans
  • Vaccine storage and temperatures
  • Training and education of personnel

Vaccine Storage and Temperatures

It is mandatory to maintain the temperature while storing vaccines as recommended by the manufacturer. The vaccines are fragile and without getting the right temperature these will not remain effective. The faulty storage equipment or frequent fluctuations in temperature deteriorate vaccines’ quality.

The cold chain vaccine carrier box monitoring helps in keeping the right temperature to maintain its effectiveness. It ensures the complete potential of the vaccines being stored.

Vaccine Storage and Handling Plans

It’s necessary to develop strategies regarding the storage and handling of vaccines. Right from ordering, taking deliveries and inventory management to storage & then handling of vaccines, everything goes through proper planning. Even the compromised vaccines are also properly managed in this process.

Monitoring consists of backup plans too to cover emergency situations like power failure or natural or man-made disasters. Tackling every situation concerned with storage and handling is done under the monitoring of cold chains. These plans and strategies are made so simple & clear that every crew member can easily understand and execute them without any delay.

Training and Education of Personnel

Monitoring is impossible without educated & trained personnel. All plans strategies are of no use if there’s no right person to execute them. The primary vaccine coordinators are assigned the right duties for managing the chain well. Besides, one backup personnel is also appointed and trained so that everything goes smoothly & uninterruptedly.

These crew members are provided with proper education and training to monitor & handle the chains and vaccine carriers safely & smartly. They are provided with proper knowledge of all techniques, procedures, policies, and more to keep up with cold chain monitoring.

Why is Vaccine Cold Chain Monitoring Important?

Cold chains and vaccine carriers provide uninterrupted services for the storage, distribution, and transportation of refrigerated or temperature-sensitive vaccines. This temperature-controlled chain keeps the quality of vaccines safe.

It is quintessential to monitor these cold chains in which temperature systems, data loggers, and technologies take the main lead. The complete system is required to be monitored well in the desired way for the best outcomes.

The vaccines are required to be kept in +2C to +8C range of temperature. The need is for proper monitoring of the cold chain so that the effectiveness of vaccines remains safe. Also, some vaccines need low temperatures, say, -80°C and for that specialized monitoring solutions are required to maintain the potency of the vaccines.  

  1. 24/7 monitoring of cold chains- An essential practice!

To safeguard the reliability & quality of vaccines, cold chain monitoring is of utmost importance. Slight fluctuations in temperature can ruin even the complete stock of refrigerated vaccines. The cold chains successfully monitor the temperature while transporting, distribution, and storage.

With 24/7 cold chains monitoring, vaccines remain safe from any damage or danger. The monitoring helps in handling the situation with ease and even if something goes sideways, the vaccines can be easily handled with backup systems. The vaccines are required to be presented in the same way as made by the manufacturers. The form and shape must be the same with the same properties for the desired outcomes. That’s why 24/7 monitoring is an essential practice.

  1. A shield from external harm

The vaccines are sensitive and can lose their efficiency with exposure to heat or light. These fragile products become ineffective to fight diseases. To keep them intact cold chains are quintessential and so is their monitoring.

The monitoring ensures that vaccines are safe under the right temperature and will not get tempered by any sort of temperature fluctuations. It shields from any harm and retains the potency of vaccines intact.

  1. Transporting vaccines with precautions

A little tempering in temperature may cause big harm. But proper monitoring of cold chains ensures that the vaccines remain at the same strict temperature as required. The potency of vaccines remains the same right from manufacturing to the final delivery to customers despite long distances or changed weather conditions. Without proper monitoring of cold chains, safe transportation, storage, and distribution of vaccines are not possible.

  1. Ensure proper working of vaccine storage equipment

The monitoring of cold chains ensures that the storage equipment is maintained well. The equipment consists of freezers, refrigerators, etc. that play the main role in storing vaccines. Under monitoring, these are properly diagnosed & scrutinized to avoid any further damage or mishap. Everything is taken care of. The ventilation, seals, and proper maintenance of each piece of equipment are done so that the quality of vaccines doesn’t get deteriorated in any term.

  1. Monitoring the vaccine inventory

The vaccine inventory is also monitored properly to avoid expired, overstocked, or wasted vaccines. Inventory management is vital to save yourself from further problems. It is monitored weekly or monthly to help the respective crew members to order the vaccines as per projected demand, current supply, and overall storage capacity.

Without inventory checks or monitoring, the cold chains might face several issues such as piling of expired vaccines, wastages, overstocking, storage problems, not meeting the demands or fulfilling orders and many such issues make the chains ineffective and unworthy. For smooth conduct, monitoring is a must.

Final Thought

Vaccines need strict temperature control as these are fragile and can get spoiled in no time if the right temperature is not provided. Most of the vaccines get wasted while handling, storage, and transportation, all because of poor monitoring services. Monitoring cold chains can save the potency and effectiveness of vaccines.

It is necessary to have a highly scalable solution that vouches for regulatory compliance, and supply chain security and keep a check on wastages. Some unique challenges can be tackled only by experienced and reliable monitoring services. Here, the integrity of the cold chain is maintained and monitored properly for better outcomes.

To keep the potency of vaccines, cold chains are important and so is their monitoring. Without efficient monitoring, the cold chains do not work effectively. For keeping it revitalized, affordable & effective monitoring programs are mandatory.

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