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PAHO/WHO donates vaccine freezer, information technology equipment to Ministry of Health

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Posted: Friday, September 24, 2021. 10:38 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: The latest donation by the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) to the Ministry of Health and Wellness (MOHW) is an ultra-low temperature (ULT) freezer. Additionally, information technology (IT) equipment and supplies were also donated to boost passive and active surveillance for Events Supposedly Attributable to Vaccination and Immunization (ESAVI) and Adverse Events of Special Interest (AESI).

Previously the U.S. government had donated a similar freezer in July for ultra cold storage of the Pfizer vaccine.

The storage is especially important because mRNA is naturally an unstable molecule that is prone to break down when exposed to temperature fluctuations. Hence, investing in an ultra-low temperature freezer for COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration is integral to national vaccine deployment.

Apart from the freezer, IT equipment and supplies were purchased to strengthen the country’s capacity to conduct surveillance of adverse events following immunization. Due to the vast increase in COVID-19 vaccine administration, on both global and national scales, it is imperative to promote safe vaccines and safe vaccination procedures which will ultimately decrease health risks. Monitoring the effects of the vaccines on the population will help prevent unnecessary health risks while maintaining trust in vaccination.

The office supplies and items included, amongst other miscellaneous stationary items, for use by the ESAVI Situation Room at the Ministry of Health and Wellness: 1 Laptop computer; 1 Monitor with HDMI Port; 1 Tablet with SIM; 1 Printer with wireless multifunction and cartridges; 1 Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) or battery backup; 1 Microsoft Office Subscription License for a year; and office supplies and stationary items.

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