FDA allows Pfizer vaccines to be stored at higher temperatures

The FDA said Feb. 25 it will allow Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine to be stored and transported at temperatures found in typical pharmaceutical freezers instead of requiring them to be stored at ultralow temperatures that require specialty freezers.

Allowing the vaccine to be stored and moved at lower temperatures will ease the burden for vaccination sites having to get special cold storage equipment and should help get the vaccine to more sites, said Peter Marks, MD, PhD, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.

The Pfizer vaccine can now be stored in conventional pharmaceutical freezers at temperatures between minus 13 F and 5 F for up to two weeks. The vaccines previously had to be stored at temperatures between minus 112 F and minus 76 F. 

Pfizer submitted data to the FDA Feb. 19 showing the vaccines remain stable at the higher temperatures and asked the FDA to approve new storage requirements. 

Read the FDA's full news release here

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