The Vaccines for Children (VFC) Program provides vaccines at no cost to children whose families may not be able to afford them otherwise. Since its implementation in 1994, the program has prevented over 320 million illnesses and saved the lives of over 732,000 children, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Proper storage of these vaccines plays a key role in maintaining quality and protecting children from vaccine-preventable diseases. Recently, the CDC issued new requirements for storing vaccines in medical grade refrigerators or freezers. They now require you to use a continuous temperature monitoring device or data logger. (View the full list of requirements.)
VFC providers must quickly adapt to these new regulations or risk losing thousands of dollars in wasted vaccines. That is why many VFC facilities are switching to a data logger connected to a cloud-based interface to ensure compliance.
Continuously Recording Temperature Data
The CDC now requires all of your monitoring devices to be a digital data logger. This is a device that communicates with sensors and keeps a record of all temperature data so you can download it at any time.
Having an accurate and reliable record of data is critical to continually demonstrating compliance. Furthermore, this data can lend insight into larger issues. For example, the data could show that a refrigerator or freezer is starting to malfunction. This gives you enough time to take preventive action before the equipment breaks down completely.
Maintaining Proper Vaccine Temperatures
Maintaining the correct temperature is crucial to ensuring vaccine potency and avoiding large financial losses. If vaccines are compromised while they are being stored at a doctor's office, hospital or clinic, the facility has to pay for the loss. They also face the risk of compromised patient health due to inactive vaccines. Digital data loggers notify you and send alarm notifications when:
- Temperatures fall outside of preset parameters
- A freezer or refrigerator alarm goes off
- A power outage occurs
With the new CDC requirements, VFC providers must check and record the unit’s minimum and maximum temperatures at the start of each workday. Digital data loggers automatically record this information, saving you time and allowing you to focus more on your patients.
Without this device, you would need to check and record the minimum and maximum temperatures twice a day. You would also need to check and record the date, time, your name and any actions taken in the event of a temperature excursion. This amounts to significant time spent on maintaining up-to-date temperature records.
Keeping Data Records Safe & Accessible
The CDC also recommends reviewing your temperature readings on a weekly basis and storing data for at least 3 years. Cloud-based systems automatically record temperatures at set time intervals and store all data in the cloud for quick and easy access. Some systems also have a mobile app for viewing temperatures remotely. This means you can view your data from anywhere at any time, eliminating the hassle of manually checking and recording temperatures.
Digital data loggers help give you peace of mind and ensure continuous monitoring of critical vaccines. These systems can be customized to your medical facility’s specific requirements.
Contact one of our experts today to learn more or find a solution that meets your exact needs.