Protecting the ‘last mile’ of cold chain for pharmacies
Despite temperature control for hospital drugs being extremely strict, the ‘last mile’ of cold chain – when prescriptions have left the hospital pharmacy – is notoriously difficult to control.
Even with the use of temperature-controlled containers, the pharmacist cannot know how the drug is actually handled in transit, or during storage on the ward or in the community.
But pharmacists remain legally responsible until the drug is actually administered and, with the MHRA* now auditing all pharmacists, it’s more important than ever that they can show compliance with drug temperature guidelines at all stages of the cold chain.
Confidence in drug use
There are two major implications of drugs being out of cold storage once
delivered to award:
( 1 ) the drug could be administered when it is not effective or even safe to do so, because of a dangerously long temperature breach and
( 2 ) the drug could be disposed of unnecessarily, because staff are unsure how long it has spent above its recommended temperature.
This situation is easily resolved by using Timestrip® PLUS to indicate for how long drugs have been exposed to higher temperatures and therefore whether it is still acceptable to use them.