B Medical Systems, a global leader in the vaccine cold chain industry in partnership with Toyota Tsusho Corporation have announced plans to roll out the world’s first refrigerated vehicle or vaccine and cold specimen transportation in Africa. The technology which was recently unveiled in across the world will facilitate the safe delivery of vaccines to remote areas at the right temperature.
The Innovation, the first of its kind in the industry has received a Performance, Quality and Safety (PQS) prequalification from the World Health Organization (WHO) and can reliably transport vaccines or any other specimens in a 2-8 °C temperature range. It is expected to solve the perennial challenge of vaccine wastage and vial breakage in many countries caused by the lack of a reliable end-to-end cold chain movement of vaccines especially to remote areas in their right temperature.
The successful rollout of immunization programs depends on the quality of the vaccine supply chain and the ability to provide a cold chain until the last mile. However, with several health centers located in extremely remote, rural, hostile terrains with minimal road infrastructure, delivering an end-to-end cold chain can be challenging.
The product brings together the legacy and expertise of Toyota Tsusho Corporation and B Medical Systems in the field of automobiles and vaccine cold chain, respectively The WHO prequalifies products and devices so that member states and UN purchasing agencies are assured of their suitability for use in immunization programs. Countries across the world can now procure this solution for the reliable transportation of vaccines.
“Last-mile has always been the weakest link in the vaccine cold chain. In several regions across the world, the last mile health centers are in remote areas that are difficult to access due to the terrain and infrastructure. We are extremely excited to bring such a solution to the market along with Toyota. The refrigerated vaccine vehicle can easily travel through rough terrains and narrow roads delivering vaccines even to the most remote health posts, thereby ensuring an effective last-mile vaccine cold chain delivery. The design of the solution also ensures that none of the vials are broken during the delivery process, eliminating vaccine wastage, which is otherwise common in refrigerated trucks. We are very happy that the product received the PQS prequalification. The combined solution has the power to revolutionize the way vaccines are delivered until the last mile,” said Luc Provost, CEO, B Medical Systems.
Provost added that the company is now in talks with various countries in Africa with a view to introducing this technology to their markets.
“This solution can now be used under the international framework of COVAX, which seeks to distribute vaccines for COVID-19 fairly to developing countries, and its use as a means of transportation for COVID-19 vaccines is also expected. The companies have started the manufacturing of the refrigerated vehicles and expect to ship the first batch in the coming weeks,” he added.
The refrigerated vehicle has a B Medical Systems vaccine refrigerator with a storage capacity of 396L incorporated into a Toyota Land Cruiser 78. The vaccine refrigerator is powered via the vehicle while in motion and can also be powered by an external regular electric supply when parked. The vehicle provides almost a day’s autonomy, in the absence of any power supply. This solution also has temperature loggers that provide an overview of the storage conditions.
B Medical Systems has been consistently bringing to the market solutions that can solve the problems faced by healthcare professionals around the world when it comes to the storage and transport of vaccines. The company has to its credit several innovative solutions like the Health Center Kit, Remote Temperature Monitoring Devices, solar direct drive refrigerator with an autonomy of 30 days, etc.
B Medical Systems is a global leader in the vaccine cold chain and has a legacy of more than 40 years. The company manufactures medical-grade vaccine refrigerators, laboratory freezers, ultra-low freezers, and transport boxes that can store and transport any vaccine in the temperature range of -86 °C to 8 °C. B Medical Systems has been working closely with governments across the world to strengthen their national immunization programs, medical refrigeration, and blood cold chain.