The Vaccines for Children program helps to provide vaccines for children unable to receive them for financial reasons. Providers belonging to the program are required to monitor the storage temperatures of the vaccines to ensure potency and efficacy when administered. Thermometers are required to be calibrated against NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) standards.
In a recent study, the CDC found that up to 76% of 45 selected VFC vaccine providers had exposed some vaccines to a temperature outside of the optimal range for more than five hours. The findings showed that the majority of providers failed to meet the vaccine management requirements, which led to a series of new requirements.