Using a Medical Freezer

Written by Fred on . Posted in Cdc storage and handling, Lab freezer, Medical refrigerator

Modern science and medicine rely on various inventions and items to make their work possible, and one of the more mundane, but no less vital, components of any laboratory or hospital is a medical fridge freezer. These storage units are essential for storing lab samples and vaccines in them, and if a freezer has the storage room and careful temperature control inside, it can securely store these delicate biological items for as long as doctors or researchers need to, and the items inside can be retrieved as needed. A stand alone freezer for vaccines or a medical refrigerator is no ordinary cooling unit, however, and any medical fridge freezer must be up to certain standards and used properly so it can serve its owners in its best capacity. Otherwise, getting the wrong kind of vaccine freezer or lab refrigerator can waste money, not fit in the lab, or worse, will not keep its contents safe, and a ruined lab sample or vaccine rack is not something any medical professional would want.

Vaccines Today

One of the more common items stored in a medical fridge freezer will be an array of vaccines being stored until they are needed, and these are fragile items. For around 300 years, vaccines have been hard at work saving lives, and back in 1796, Edward Jenner innovated he “arm to arm” inoculation against smallpox, and this radical new procedure involved taking material from an infected person’s blister and injecting it into a different person’s skin, and this method was used on cowpox in particular. Today, many more diseases and viruses are treated and prevented with vaccines, and as one example, the number of measles-related deaths has gone down from 546,800 to 114,900 between 2000 and 2014, which represents a 79% decrease. As of the late 1940s, large-scale vaccine production became a reality, and in that decade, common vaccines included those for smallpox, tetanus, whooping cough, and diphtheria. Even more viruses such as polio are treated with vaccines today. All told, vaccines save people from suffering over 2.5 million unnecessary deaths every year. How can these delicate vaccines, and lab samples, be stored safely for later use.

A Medical Fridge Freezer For Work

Guidelines are already in place for storing vaccines, which can help lab techs and doctors know exactly how treat their delicate vaccines. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, for one, issued a guideline saying that frozen vaccines should be stored in temperatures ranging from -58 and 5 degrees Fahrenheit, which figures to -50 and -15 degrees Celsius. Also, the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics released data showing that in the year 2016, 335,700 Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technician jobs existed in the United States, meaning that plenty of professionals are hard at work keeping samples and vaccines safe in labs and hospitals.

No ordinary refrigeration unit will do to keep vaccines safe inside. Many commercially available units have unacceptable amounts of temperature variance inside them, often due to people repeatedly opening and closing them (usually to put food in and out), and the inside may become too warm for vaccines, which could cause them to spoil. Instead, a more specialized medical fridge freezer should be bought by a lab or hospital for use, one that has better control of its interior temperature.

Any lab or hospital looking to buy a freezer should also consider simple logistics, such as how many vaccines it will need to store at once; a too-small fridge can’t handle them all, and that is too big is wasting money and room. Any lab or hospital staff should also ensure that there is proper room for this freezer unit either on the floor or on a shelf that can support its weight and still be easy to access when need be. Sometimes, a lab’s staff may find multiple units available for their needs, and they can browse the exact details of each one and also get customer reviews to see just how well (or not) a freezer unit will work, and also compare prices on different models as well as their size and features.

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