The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said that Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine can be stored “at acceptable temperatures, provided by the freezers available in regular pharmacies for two weeks.”
Previously, the agency required that this vaccine be stored in deep refrigeration – from minus 76 to minus 112 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 60 to minus 80 degrees Celsius). This requirement created great difficulties both in transportation and storage of the vaccine, especially in rural areas, where there was no adequate refrigeration equipment.
The new guidelines “will ease the problems with the delivery of deep refrigeration equipment to vaccination centers and increase their number,” said an agency spokesman.
The change in recommendations was made following a request from the vaccine manufacturer, which cited the results of a recent study. Pfizer vaccine is usually delivered in insulated containers filled with dry ice. While the FDA still prefers storing the Pfizer vaccine in deep refrigeration, the statement notes that short-term storage in conventional refrigerators is acceptable. This rule change does not apply to vaccine tubes that have already been thawed.
The vaccine has “warmed up”