Retaining Pfizer Vaccines Thru Standard Refrigerator Temperatures

Published by Nick Barrowclough on

Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine

One of the challenges in the transport and distribution of Pfizers COVID-19 vaccine has been the ultracold temperatures required. mRNA-based vaccines such as the Pfizer and Moderna typically require storage at temperatures as low as -90°C. However new research shows that the Pfizer vaccine maintains effectiveness at the temperatures found in standard medical refrigerators for up to 2 weeks.

on Feb 19th, 2021 Pfizer made a statement on their website that they have submitted new data to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that shows the COVID-19 vaccine was still stable after 2 weeks stored at -25°C to -15°C.

This new data removes one of the significant drawbacks to the distribution of the Pfizer vaccines. The initial requirements of -80°C storage meant specialist handling, logistics, and expensive storage solutions. Some hospitals and clinics were investing in specialist ultra-low temperature (ULT) refrigerators.

Pfizer submitted the data to the FDA as part of a proposed update to the U.S Emergency Use Authorization. The top priority is to ensure the vaccine is safe, effective but also available to the most vulnerable people in the world. This new data gives hope that pharmacies and vaccination centers in the less developed world can utilize the Pfizer vaccines.

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