COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit: Operational Considerations for Healthcare Practitioners

The rollout of COVID-19 vaccines has received national and international attention. As part of our ongoing COVID-19 response, the U.S Pharmacopeia (USP) rapidly engaged stakeholders and convened experts to identify and help address operational efficiency gaps across U.S. states and territories to help increase COVID-19 vaccinations.

The COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit is developed by over 30 independent expert volunteers led by USP’s Healthcare Safety and Quality Expert Committee with representation from several other Expert Committees including U.S. government representatives from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). It is informed by USP’s public quality standards for compounding, microbiology, containers, distribution, stability and storage.

The COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit provides strategies that can support healthcare practitioners to:

Version 3.0, released on March 12, features updates related to:

  • Preparation, storage and transportation considerations including beyond-use date information for the newly authorized Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Updated transportation and storage information for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Ancillary supply re-distribution considerations, when applicable

Learn more from the Pharmacy Times and Reuters Health/Medscape.

covid-19 vaccine handling

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This toolkit will be updated as additional vaccines are authorized and other information becomes available. Sign up to receive critical updates

maximizing doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine

Maximizing Doses of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

Consistently maximizing doses per vial of COVID-19 vaccines is essential to administering vaccines to more people.

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covid-19 vaccine beyond use date

Beyond use date in vial or syringe for COVID-19 Vaccines

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transporting covid-19 vaccines

Transporting COVID-19 Vaccines Off-Site

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faq for covid-19 vaccine preparation and safety

FAQs for Optimizing COVID-19 Vaccine Preparation and Safety

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The COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit is an informational resource and is intended to complement the following resources as well as those provided by the CDC, U.S. FDA, vaccine manufacturers, and state and local departments of health:

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For over 200 years, USP has worked to build trust where it matters most: in the world's medicines, dietary supplements and foods. Through our rigorous science and the public quality standards we set, USP helps protect patient safety and improve the health of people around the world. Excerpted USP-NF Standards referenced in the USP COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit are available here.