EU seeks ways to make vaccines resistant to hot weather

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Half of the vaccines sent to developing countries are lost as they deteriorate during transportation, but a new EU-sponsored project may solve the problem.

Every year, 22 million people in the world do not receive the necessary vaccines they need. One of the reasons is that vaccines must be kept at exactly the right temperature, between 2-8 degrees celsius, or else their quality and effectiveness deteriorates.

This makes it hard to transport the vaccines, and handle them at their destination, as infrastructure and electricity conditions in some developing countries are not in line with the necessary storage requirements.

“We will get the vaccines there, but we have to spend more resources trying to keep the vaccines cold which we could have spent on something else. Vaccines have different levels of sensitivity so for different vaccines for example against lung infections, we have to throw away 50%,” Eva Dalekant, project support officer at UNICEF, told the Swedish TV station, SVT.

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