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The storage of tetanus vaccine in accident and emergency departments: a postal survey.
  1. J D Howell,
  2. N G Kirby
  1. Accident and Emergency Department, Guy's Hospital, London, UK.

    Abstract

    The aim of this study was to assess the quality of storage of tetanus vaccine in accident and emergency (A&E) departments and also of the awareness of Department of Health guidelines. A postal questionnaire was sent to 50 randomly selected major A&E departments in the British Isles, enquiring about awareness of Department of Health guidelines (Department of Health, 1990). Forty (80%) A&E departments responded. Only 14 were aware of the Department of Health guidelines and in only 18 was there a member of staff taking responsibility for vaccine storage. The study found that safe storage of vaccine, and therefore guarantee of efficacy, is not occurring in the majority of A&E departments. Unnoticed failure of refrigerators could be exposing patients to the risk of tetanus infection.

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