Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine can be stored in refrigerator for a month: US
The Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine can be stored at refrigerator temperatures for up to a month in the United States, the country's health regulator announced Wednesday.
The US Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday authorized storage of Pfizer Inc and German partner BioNTech SE's Covid-19 vaccine at standard freezer temperatures for up to one month, in an effort to make the vaccine more widely available.
It had made the decision "based on a review of recent data submitted by Pfizer," and will allow vials of the vaccine to be stored at refrigerator temperatures of 2-8 degrees Celsius (35-46 degrees Fahrenheit) for up to one month.
The vials were previously only allowed to be kept at such temperatures for five days.
"This change should make this vaccine more widely available to the American public by facilitating the ability of vaccine providers, such as community doctors' offices, to receive, store and administer the vaccine," said Peter Marks, director of the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.
The change is especially important for global and remote US facilities that have poor transport and storage infrastructure.
In February, the US health agency approved the storage and transportation of the vaccine at standard freezer temperatures for up to two weeks instead of ultra-cold conditions.
The European Medicines Agency on Monday also approved the storage of the Pfizer vaccine in fridges for up to a month.
The vaccine was granted emergency use authorization in December with a label requiring it be stored at temperatures between -80ºC and -60ºC (-112ºF to -76ºF), meaning it had to be shipped in specially designed containers.
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