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With the distribution now underway for the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, one of the issues having to be taken into account for the vaccines is how they have to be stored before being administered to patients.

The Pfizer vaccine has to be stored at an extremely cold temperature, and it's been brought up in a number of news stories over the past month. One of Houston Methodist's leading doctors discussed this point just a few weeks ago.

"The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine must be stored at ultra-low freezing temperatures, about -100 degrees Fahrenheit. This temperature falls well below what's found in a standard freezer," explained Dr. John Cooke, medical director of the RNA Therapeutics Program at Houston Methodist. "In fact, the type of freezers needed to store this vaccine long-term aren't ones you'll find in a doctor's office, drug store or even most hospitals. The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine also needs to be kept frozen for long-term stability, but it can be kept in a standard refrigerator in a clinic for a few weeks."

On Tuesday, the Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine announced that they would be loaning the Amarillo Department of Public Health two of the specialty freezers needed to store the Pfizer vaccine properly.

Over the past two weeks, Texas state officials have announced that hospitals and pharmacies in all prominent West Texas cities would receive both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.

The Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine is still under construction in Amarillo and is slated to open for classes in the Fall 2021 semester.