Many manufacturers market solutions for clinical cold storage applications but it can be confusing to truly understand the differences between these products. As life-saving blood therapies, vaccines, and medications all have unique cold chain requirements, ensuring cold storage safeguards products appropriately is critical. Terms such as “Pharmaceutical Grade”, “Purpose Built”, and “Medical Grade” are commonly used to describe these types of units. However, there are currently no standard industry definitions related to these terms which can add to potential confusion.
Temperature performance is the primary criterion that should be considered when assessing cold storage for clinical applications. Temperature uniformity is typically measured by placing multiple temperature probes across varying locations in the cold storage cabinet and then studying maximum observed differences. Units with poor uniformity may have large differences in temperature according to the location within the cabinet. This type of performance creates unique risks for highly regulated products such as vaccines and blood therapies as poor uniformity may allow these products to be stored outside of required temperature ranges. Exposure to prolonged temperatures that are too high or too low (especially if freezing) can damage product and have a direct impact on patient safety. Units with tight temperature uniformity help eliminate the risk of damaging product.......
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