Is your healthcare facility's temperature data good enough?
Wednesday, Aug 19th 2015

With the sophistication of modern technology, it's not surprising that products such as vaccines and blood require a great amount of temperature monitoring. It's also not surprising, considering its size and level of high-quality medical care, that America uses a lot of these products on an annual basis. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, in the United States alone, 15 million bags of blood are used each year to treat patients. 

And although this massive amount of bodily fluid is one of the most useful commodities in the healthcare industry, if it isn't stored properly it runs a serious risk of spoiling.

In fact, Blood Center of the Pacific stated that blood can only be stored between 1 and 6 degrees Celsius or 33.8 and 42.8 degrees Fahrenheit.  Any variation from these temperatures can be extremely dangerous, and may result in the blood sample having to be thrown out. The center also said that "storage units must be equipped with a continuous monitoring system that records temperatures at least once every four hours and an alarm that sounds if temperature limits are reached."

Blood isn't the only thing that needs a temperature sensor
Of course, there are many other medical products that need a constant level of monitoring. Perhaps the best known of these, and also the most important, are vaccines. Vaccines need just as much care and attention as blood to keep from spoiling, and as such there are very strict ways to store them. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has noted that the ideal temperature of the average vaccine is 40 degrees F, with an acceptable range between 35 and 46 degrees.

The CDC also outlined that a vaccine temperature monitor must be checked at least twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. And while this is a fine strategy, it simply isn't the best a healthcare professional can do considering the technology the average person has on hand these days. What happens if the temperature varies greatly between these two checkups? Should medical storage professionals be required to personally check these temperatures every hour? Every minute?

How ITWatchDogs can help
Vaccine temperatures should obviously still be recorded, however, there is a much easier way to get up-to-date temperature data. Climate monitors like the Watchdog 1400 are the perfect solution to this problem. The Watchdog 1400 has a temperature range of -22 to 185 degrees F, well within the storage ranges of both blood and vaccines. The built-in data logger gives a consistent view of what temperatures these products have been exposed to, which allows storage professionals the ability to see temperature fluctuation over long periods of time. 

And while the Watchdog 1400 can text or email storage professionals if temperatures exceed certain parameters, perhaps the most exciting piece about this product is its ability to trigger an external relay-controlled auto-dialer. Once this auto-dialer is purchased and set up, the Watchdog 1400 can actually call up to nine phone numbers until the phone owners answer the call. Within seconds of the temperature reaching a dangerous level, multiple medical professionals could be notified and could start working on a solution.