Ideal design features specific to plasma and cryoprecipitate freezers

Cryoprecipitate

Upright plasma freezer with in-built temperature alarms

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"Compression type" plasma freezers are suitable for the storage of plasma (FFP) and cryoprecipitate. The main difference between a blood refrigerator and a plasma freezer is in the temperatures that they are capable of maintaining. A plasma freezer is expected to operate at a temperature of below -30 °C. The equipment should use CFC-free refrigerant gas and electricity supply from the national grid. The freezer has an internal fan cooling mechanism to ensure the even distribution of air in the cabinet.

The general construction of a plasma freezer is similar to that of a blood refrigerator, except that there is more insulation in the cabinet of a freezer, allowing the maintenance of the lower temperatures necessary. There is a difference in the evaporator arrangement that results in the lower temperatures being attained. The equipment also has a temperature monitoring device similar to that of the refrigerator. The hold-over time is at least 24 hours unless the freezer door is opened frequently.

Table 6. Classification of plasma freezers by capacity (WHO Specification BTS/FR.1)

PF1

PF2

PF3

PF4

PF5

Approx. number of 300 ml plasma packs

<50

51-150

151-250

251-500

501-1000

Approx. internal capacity of equipment (litres) <75 76-200 201-300 301-625 626-1300

Approx. internal capacity of equipment (litres) <75 76-200 201-300 301-625 626-1300

Access to cold room through the blood stock management area. Crates contain blood of the same type, stored in expiry date order, ready for despatch to a hospital blood bank.

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