Guatemala receives new cold chain equipment donated by PAHO and Canada

18 Nov 2022
Donación equipo de refrigeración para resguardo de vacunas

18 noviembre de 2022 –The Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), with the support of the Government of Canada, donated 180 freezers and 18 spare parts kits to the Guatemala Ministry of Public Health and Social Assistance to be distributed to the country's 29 health areas.

"This donation will help strength the country’s vaccine storage capacity, enabling us to continue to improve vaccination services for Guatemalans,” Vice Minister of Health Leslie Samayoa, said.

"Canada can make a difference by ensuring that life-saving vaccines reach the most vulnerable communities. It is only through these efforts that we will be able to put an end to diseases like COVID-19, which have had devastating effects on health, education and economic growth,” Added Rajani Alexander, Canada’s Ambassador to Guatemala.

PAHO’s Representative in Guatemala, Gerardo Alfaro, emphasized Canada's continuous support to the National Health System and the strategic value of the equipment delivered.

"This donation reinforces the Ministry's vaccine storage capacity, helping to reduce the gaps by providing timely vaccine doses to rural communities. PAHO is grateful for the solidarity of the Government of Canada in efforts to increase vaccination coverage in Guatemala," Alfaro said.

The refrigerators have a storage capacity of 225 liters, which will accommodate between 5,000 and 8,000 vaccine doses. The vaccines can be kept at an optimal temperature of +2°C to +8°C, thus preserving the cold chain.

The donated units use a refrigerant gas of natural origin, which has a low impact on global warming and the ozone layer. In addition, their energy consumption rate is 30% lower than domestic refrigeration equipment. In the event of a power outage, the refrigerators can store vaccines for up to 55 hours between +2°C and +8 °C.