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The importance of keeping the cold chain intact

Michelle Falconer, screening and immunisation coordinator, Commissioning Directorate, NHS England.

Vaccines save lives — but the cost procured by the Government is over £300 million a year. Last calendar year, vaccines wasted through incidents in primary care had a value at list price of £3.7 million. This figure represents vaccines that were disposed as a result of both avoidable and nonavoidable incidents, including failureto store them properly. This does not include any flu vaccine wastage (other than vaccines from the children’s programme), or any other centrally procured vaccine which Public Health England (PHE) supply and do not collect data on (e.g. rabies vaccine) (personal communication with Chris Lucas, vaccine supply team, PHE).