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Power outages and refrigerated medicines: The need for better guidelines, awareness and planning


Kosari, S and Walker, EJ and Anderson, C and Peterson, GM and Naunton, M and Castillo Martinez, E and Garg, S and Thomas, J, Power outages and refrigerated medicines: The need for better guidelines, awareness and planning, Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics, 43, (5) pp. 737-739. ISSN 0269-4727 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1111/jcpt.12716


What is known and objective: Vaccines and other pharmaceuticals are essential medical supplies that require continuous storage at specific temperatures to maintain viability. Power outages can lead to a break in the cold chain, resulting in the degradation of essential medicines.

Comment: After a power outage, the stability of vaccines and other medicines can be difficult to ascertain. Many public health guidelines therefore recommend discarding potentially compromised pharmaceuticals unless the cold chain can be guaranteed a costly endeavour. There are government guidelines aimed at minimizing exposure to high temperatures in the event of a power outage; however, the usefulness of these guidelines is uncertain.

What is new and conclusion: The actual cost of vaccine and pharmaceutical loss due to a break in the cold chain is poorly studied and requires further research. Additional recommendations regarding the stability of specific medicines would also be a valuable resource.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:stability, vaccines, temperature, electricity, cold-chain breach, medication wastage, power outage, refrigerated medicines
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Pharmacology and pharmaceutical sciences
Research Field:Pharmaceutical sciences
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Evaluation of health and support services
Objective Field:Evaluation of health and support services not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Peterson, GM (Professor Gregory Peterson)
ID Code:126505
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Pharmacy
Deposited On:2018-06-14
Last Modified:2021-01-12

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