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    Status of cold box testing and buyers' guide: update, December 1984.

    World Health Organization [WHO]. Expanded Programme on Immunization [EPI]

    [Unpublished] 1984. 24 p. (EPI/CCIS/84.4)

    Since 1979, vaccine hand carriers, cold boxes, and vaccine packaging have been submitted by the World Health Organization (WHO) for laboratory testing at the Consumers Association Laboratories, Harpenden Rise, UK, and UNIVALLE, Cali, Colombia. The tests results have been summarized in this document in order to inform users and buyers of the equipment available as to its performance capacities and to serve as a guide to the selection of equipment most suited to specific conditions. Detailed tables list all equipment which has been tested. The equipment is divided into categories on the basis of vaccine storage capacity, and the following major features are listed: external dimensions (in centimeters); vaccine in storage capacity (in litres); number of icepacks necessary (as used during the tests); cold life at an ambient temperature of +43 degrees Centigrade; weight fully loaded (in kilograms); and durability (under rough handling conditions). Equipment has been subjected to 2 main types of routine test: performance or temperatur rise test; and durability or drop test. In the course of testing, a number of interesting observations were made, including: using more icepacks than specified will lengthen the cold life of a container without harming the vaccine but also will increase weight load and decrease the vaccine storage capacity; icepacks are more quickly frozen in "icepack freezers" as opposed to chest type domestic freezers; some boxes had problems with lid fastenings, which came undone on impact; and 5 factors should be taken into consideration in the purchase of any box, that is, vaccine storage capacity, cold life, weight fully loaded, durability, and price.
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