Immunizations, Vaccines & Cold Chain
UPDATED: May 17, 2022
Guidance For Routine Immunization Services During COVID-19 – UPDATED May 2022
CHANGES: Vaccine Pick-Up and Vaccine Inventory
The Public Health is using Panorama for vaccine record and inventory management. Each premise that stores publicly-funded vaccine will be entered into the database and provided with a Panorama Premise Number. We will start to advise those who order vaccine of this number when they pick-up vaccine. All vaccines distributed and returned will be entered into the system.
To ensure your vaccine order is ready for you, we ask that you:
- Allow a minimum of 5 business days for vaccine order to be filled and indicate the date you will pick up the vaccine
- Choose one of three time periods you will be arriving to pick-up vaccine
- Use the New VACCINE ORDER FORMS:
- Use the New VACCINE RETURN FORM when vaccine is to be returned to Public Health
- Once provided to you, record your Panorama premise number on your vaccine order forms
Don’t forget to:
- bring your cooler within the appropriate temperature range of 2°C to 8°C
- submit your fridge temperatures with your vaccine order
- only maintain a one month supply of vaccine in your refrigerator
Changes to the ISPA in July 2014
- Starting in the 2014/15 school year, children need to have proof of immunization against meningococcal disease, whooping cough and chickenpox to attend school
- Please see the fact sheet and a Q&A document for health care providers about the updated immunization requirements for school attendance.
Please Remind Patients to Call Public Health!
Please remind patients to call the health unit with any immunization updates to ensure their records are kept up to date. This is especially important for children who require complete immunization records to attend school or day care. The number for patients to call is (705) 743-1000.
Reporting Adverse Storage Conditions (Cold Chain Failures)
Vaccine Storage & Handling Guidelines
Vaccines must be kept between 2°C to 8°C to ensure the vaccines stay as potent and effective as possible. When the vaccine storage refrigerator varies above or below these temperatures, this is known as a cold chain failure and must be immediately reported to Public Health at 705-743-1000.
To order the Ministry’s Vaccine Storage and Handling Guidelines, please contact Public Health at 705-743-1000 or click here to order online.
The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care will be mailing health care providers an updated information package on vaccine storage and handling. The package will contain:
1. Vaccine Storage and Handling Guidelines
The Vaccine Storage and Handling Guidelines are intended to assist you with how to properly store and handle publicly funded vaccines. Prior to ordering vaccine, you are required to understand and meet the vaccine storage and handling requirements indicated in this document. Essential information is now highlighted throughout the Vaccine Storage and Handling Guidelines.
2. “How to Monitor Refrigerator Temperature” Sticker
This describes temperature monitoring practices. It may be placed on the Storage Pocket or directly on the vaccine refrigerator.
3. Storage Pocket
The Storage Pocket is a convenient plastic pouch where you can store your vaccine storage and handling materials (e.g., Vaccine Storage and Handling Guidelines and the Vaccine Refrigerator Maintenance Log Book). The pocket can be affixed to or close to the refrigerator.
4. “Protect Your Vaccines – Protect Your Patients” Poster
The “Protect Your Vaccines – Protect Your Patients” poster provides some key messages regarding vaccine storage and handling requirements. As the poster is printed on cling material, this will allow the poster to adhere to the surface of a wall beside the vaccine refrigerator without the use of magnets or glue.
5. “Do Not Unplug” Sticker
The “Do Not Unplug” sticker should be placed above or beside the vaccine refrigerator electrical outlet. This sticker will act as a reminder to prevent the accidental unplugging of the refrigerator.
6. “Stop” Sticker
Place the “Stop” sticker on the vaccine refrigerator door. This sticker will help to reduce the number of times the refrigerator door is opened.
Although not included, the Vaccine Temperature Log Book has been redesigned and is more user friendly with temperature graphs removed. Please use the Vaccine Temperature Log Book to document vaccine refrigerator temperatures twice daily. You may place the Vaccine Temperature Log Book in the Storage Pocket provided or hang it next to the refrigerator.
The Vaccine Refrigerator Maintenance Log Book is a new resource that you can use to document refrigerator maintenance and repairs. Each refrigerator storing publicly funded vaccines should have a log book which will be provided to you during routine inspections.
Thank you for your continued support and commitment to the safe storage and handling of publicly funded vaccines.
Questions about vaccines and autism?
If you have patients who are questioning vaccines, there are many reliable websites for them. The following are great sites which provide information on vaccines and the link to autism:
For more information, contact or refer to patients to the Vaccine Preventable Disease program nurses at Public Health at (705) 743-1000.