The recent investment of US$1.4 million by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in innovative refrigeration technology to bring a life-saving vaccine cooler to market is an important development. It is an indicator of the need to maintain vaccines at appropriate temperatures to ensure patient safety, and to help save lives.
Immunization helps protect individuals and communities from infectious disease. However, to remain effective, vaccines need to be stored within the temperature range recommended by manufacturers – usually in the range +2˚C to +8˚C. Incorrect storage of vaccines can be wasteful and costly, and can also reduce or nullify the potency of the vaccine.