The 2020 Vaccine Storage and Handling Toolkit is a comprehensive guide that reflects best practices for vaccine storage and handling from Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommendations, product information from vaccine manufacturers, and scientific studies.The Vaccine Storage & Handling Toolkit was originally launched in 2012. In more recent years, it has been updated annually to account for advances in practices and changes in the market.
The toolkit has been updated for 2020 to clarify language including:
- Beyond use date (BUD)
- Routine maintenance for vaccine storage units
- New definitions added to the glossary
We have highlighted these three areas of changes for you to use as a quick reference. To read the changes in full, you can download the CDC Vaccine Storage and Handling Toolkit off the CDC website.
Beyond Use Date (BUD)
Understanding Expiration Dates
Determining when a vaccine or diluent expires is a critical step in maintaining proper storage and handling. Understanding vaccine expiration dates can help save your practice time and money.
When the expiration date has only a month and year, the product may be used up to and including the last day of that month. If a day is included with the month and year, the product may only be used through the end of that day.
Beyond Use Dates
Some vaccines have a beyond use date (BUD), which is calculated based on the date the vial is first entered and the storage information in the package insert. If the vaccine has no BUD, use the expiration date provided by the manufacturer.
The BUD replaces the manufacturer’s expiration date and should be noted on the label along with the initials of the person making the calculation.
Routine Maintenance for Vaccine Storage Units
Storage units and Temperature Monitoring Devices need regular maintenance to ensure proper operation. Conduct routine maintenance for all vaccine storage units and related equipment so that your equipment functions at maximum efficiency.
Storage unit temperatures may need to be adjusted over time. In some situations, thermostats may need to be reset in summer and winter, depending on room temperature.
Do not leave vaccines in a storage unit that does not maintain temperatures within the recommended range.
If you are unable to stabilize the temperature in your unit within the required range, or temperatures in the unit are consistently at the extreme high or low end of the range, your vaccine supply is at high risk.
Use your SOPs to identify an alternative unit with appropriate temperatures and sufficient storage space until the primary unit can be repaired or replaced.
Other Blogs You Might Be Interested In...
- Here’s How the CDC Defines A Vaccine Refrigerator
- Vaccine Storage: The Best of 2019
- The Influence of Storage Temperature on Vaccines & Medications
- The Ultimate Guide to CDC Vaccine Storage and Temperature Monitoring
New definitions have been added to the glossary to better define what things like “pharmaceutical-grade” mean. This blog post outlines the different types of refrigeration as described inside the 2020 CDC Vaccine Storage and Handling Toolkit.
If you do not have a copy of the 2020 Vaccine Storage and Handling Toolkit, you can download it at the link below. Every practice should keep a copy on-hand and review the changes annually.