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Newswest 9 | Midland, Texas | newswest9.com

Odessa hospitals plan to store COVID-19 vaccine using dry ice

The reason for this is because hospital officials say the vaccine is so small that it will be easy to store several doses at once.

ODESSA, Texas — With the COVID-19 vaccine on the horizon, hospitals are working on plans to house and distribute the vaccine to their community.

The Pfizer version of the vaccine will need to be stored at sub zero temperatures, as low as -94 degrees Fahrenheit/-70 degrees Celsius.

Hospitals like Midland Memorial are investing in freezers to help keep the vaccine stored safely, but intend on using the equipment for other things once COVID-19 has passed.

Other hospitals, such as Odessa Regional Medical Center and Medical Center Hospital, are not planning on utilizing extra equipment to store the vaccine.

Instead, they have a setup that will use dry ice to keep the vaccine cool.

The reason for this is because hospital officials say the vaccine is so small that it will be easy to store several doses at once.

"That box is gonna be able to fit like 1,000 doses so that pizza box needs to fit in something that's gonna keep it below a low temperature. So we aren't looking at a super freezer, we're looking at using dry ice because the dry ice lasts about two weeks," said Dr. Rohith Saravannan with ORMC.

The Moderna vaccine that is also showing promise will not require sub zero storage. Regardless of which vaccine comes to the area first, hospital officials say this way they will be prepared.