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Ihor Kuzin: Special refrigeration equipment for vaccine storage has been updated by 95%

20 December 2023

Old equipment, such as refrigerators and freezers, has been replaced with modern cold rooms and refrigeration equipment that meets WHO standards. This allows us to ensure a full cycle of vaccination of the population, uninterrupted availability of drugs in the regions, and bring immunization services closer to every Ukrainian regardless of their location.

“A systematic program of re-equipment is underway, taking into account compliance with cold chain standards. At the national level, 95% of the cold equipment - refrigerators and freezers - used specifically for the vaccine cycle has been replaced, starting from national-level warehouses to the creation or repair of such cold rooms at the level of regional centers for disease control and prevention. Refrigeration equipment in some healthcare facilities is also being updated, and next year we plan to set up inter-district warehouses in several regions,” said Deputy Minister of Health and Chief State Sanitary Doctor Ihor Kuzin.

In particular, the Regional Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ensure that vaccines are received, and distributed, and that the cold chain conditions are met during storage and transportation of the vaccine to medical facilities in the region. The re-equipment is part of joint projects with the World Bank and cooperation with international partners UNICEF and WHO.

As part of the joint project of the Ministry of Health and the World Bank, healthcare facilities and the CDC received more than 9,000 units of specialized refrigeration equipment (2068 refrigerators with ice protection, 1034 freezers with cold storage, 2066 networked combined refrigerators, 4134 temperature control devices). Also, thanks to the Ministry of Health’s cooperation with international partners UNICEF and WHO in partnership with the EU, 26 cold rooms were equipped, and 36 vehicles were provided to the CDCs to deliver the vaccine within the oblast and conduct outreach vaccinations in remote settlements. The vehicles are equipped with refrigerated trucks, which are used to transport the vaccine and maintain the required temperature during transportation from the moment of shipment to delivery.