Using logtag temperature loggers in vaccine fridges provide a number of benefits. This blog addresses why you should use a temperature logger in vaccine fridges, why a Logtag specifically, and how often should you download results.
Why use temperature loggers in vaccine fridges
Benefits of a vaccine fridge
A vaccine fridge has a number of features that set it apart from other fridges. These features include:
- Computer control of temperature instead of just a thermal switch and timer to provide better control of the temperature
- Fan forced circulation of air to ensure a uniform distribution of temperature
- Audible alarms when the vaccine fridge is too hot or cold to notify staff of a problem as soon as it occurs
- Temperature display on the front of the vaccine fridge to allow staff to immediately see what the temperature is and to remind them that temperature is important
- Recording of the minimum and maximum temperatures so that staff can see if there have been any issues since last time they checked
Extra benefits of a temperature logger
So what does a temperature logger in vaccine fridges offer?
- A min/max reading can only tell you if a problem occurred. A temperature logger can tell you
- when it started (so you can hopefully work out why)
- how long it lasted
- if it happened once or numerous times
- how hot/cold it actually became. The decision to keep or dispose of the stock is then based on knowing exactly what happened, not just that a temperature variation occurred.
- A temperature logger can indicate if high peaks are due to the vaccine fridge being set incorrectly or is a once-off due to the door being open too long etc
- “Who polices the police?” is a critical issue. If the vaccine fridge is not working correctly then how would you know? That is, if the vaccine fridge is incorrectly measuring the temperature then it can’t correctly control the temperature. The temperature logger will independently warn you if there is a problem.
- Since temperature loggers are independent, the results are far more trustworthy than manually recorded results by staff. It is reliable proof that the vaccine fridge is operating correctly.
Why use Logtag Temperature Loggers in a Vaccine Fridge
Let’s be very specific – why use Logtag Temperature Loggers in a Vaccine Fridge?
There are two key reasons (as well as all the reasons above):
- The alarm indicator provides an immediate visual indication to staff if there is or has been a problem. Staff would have to manually check the min/max reading on a vaccine fridge to see if there was a problem, but the Logtag has a visual indication that there has been a problem. If the staff see the red flashing LED they know that they need to check the results immediately to find out what has happened.
- The Logtag records when people have pushed the button. That means it is possible to tell when staff have actually checked the results. So if you need proof that staff have checked the fridge each day (or twice a day) then all you need to do is have them push the button. This means that they have looked at the logger and made contact with it. It’s not like a form that can be back filled. It is proof that the staff have checked that the vaccine fridge is OK. Oh, and well they are at it they could also check and reset the vaccine fridge’s min/max reading.
How often should you download the results?
(Disclaimer: Individual states, countries and companies may have laws or policies that restrict the options available. This answer is based on the reasoning contained)
The answers are based on what the benefits are.
- As an audit tool for when things are fine – there have been no alarms so all you need is proof that everything is fine. So the extreme answer is “before the memory is full” which could be a month or more. Our recommendation is once a week, fortnight or month. Personally I recommend a fortnight. Too often and you lose the time saving benefits of an automated system. Too infrequent and you run the risk of loss of data if the unit fails.
- As an analysis tool when things go wrong – immediately. If the red LED is flashing, download the results immediately to determine what the problem is and what should be done.
- As a check to see if the vaccine fridge is correct – actually this has already been covered above. If the vaccine fridge thinks everything is fine, and the Logtag temperautre logger thinks everything is fine then there is no need to check the results. If the Logtag thinks there is a problem then download the results immediately. It may be that the fridge is failing and the temperatures have plummeted. The point is that the Logtag temperature logger will notify you that there is a problem.
How often should you check the Logtag temperature logger?
By “check” we mean “look at”. This is a very different question to “how often should you download the results”.
Our recommendation is at the start of every day and optionally towards the end of the day.
At the start of every day is because you want to make sure there were no problems when people weren’t present.
Throughout the day the fridge will have an audible alarm which will notify staff of a problem.
But how can you be sure that the fridge is working correctly? By having that second check throughout the day. There is no need to download the results, but to simply check the alarm LEDs to ensure all is still fine.
How can you be sure the Logtag was checked?
Easy – Since the Logtag records and displays when the push button was used, the answer is to simply push the button.