Temperature controlled storage is extremely important for many pharmaceutical inventories such as drugs, vaccines and blood samples which need to be stored within certain narrow temperature bands in order to remain useable. Any compromise in the quality of stored inventory can have severe impacts on the health of patients at the facility which means many healthcare providers spend a lot of time ensuring the security and quality of their pharmaceutical cold chains.
Pharmaceutical and hospital fridges are available in a wide range of sizes from small cabinets to large walk-in cold rooms and cold stores. Many modern hospitals and healthcare facilities are now choosing to have external bulk stores, such as those built from large reefer or shipping containers, as these can be safely placed outside thanks to weatherproofing, and as they are not permanent structures many of them do not even need planning permission which can be extremely useful in terms of time and cost savings.
Storage capacities are typically given in terms of standard pallet sizes, with typical container-style medical cold storage ranging in capacity from 4 to 20 pallets. Larger capacities are also available, and many suppliers will even offer custom built solutions which can store up to many hundreds of pallets with additional options such as tailored access points, extra width for easier stock access, and additional remote monitoring to ensure the required conditions are maintained.
Environmental factors are also critical for the safe storage of medicines and samples, including ambient humidity and even air pressure as well as temperature. Some substances will be unusable if there is even a single centigrade of variation in temperature, so intensive monitoring and quality control is critical.
A well-made pharmaceutical cold store will include at least two fully independent refrigeration units that will act as backup for each other. Most will also include at least a basic alarm system, digital readout and possibly even a third refrigeration unit for additional redundancy.
Many hospitals and emergency facilities may also choose to connect their external cold stores to independent power sources or backup generators in case there is a power failure on the main grid and backups cannot be moved into place by other means rapidly enough to ensure that temperature sensitive goods are not compromised.
Expert medical and pharmaceutical cold chain suppliers such as CRS Cold Storage can provide advice and custom built, fully tailored cold storage solutions for a wide range of applications. For more information, or for a free, no-obligation quote, visit the CRS Cold Storage UK or CRS Ireland.