Storage of chilled Medicines eg Insulin

Discussion in 'Health & Medicine' started by Catastrophy, Mar 29, 2010.

  1. Catastrophy

    Catastrophy Catastrophy

    I have found an inexpensive way to store medicines such as Insulin without a fridge or a cool box.

    A company called Frio produce a range of bags which have 'grains' in them. When the bag is submerged in cold water, or run under a cold tap the grains turn into a gel which keeps the medication inside it cold for up to 5 days. When you don't need the bag it dries out, the gel turns back into grains. It is reusable and an environmentally friendly way of keeping Insulins cool and out of the reach of little 'uns who may be raiding the fridge (I love my son but he is a little toad at times!)

    The bags come in 4 colours (useful for us as my daughter has three different types of insulin and a glucagon injection kit!) and a range of sizes from pockets that are designed for eye drops (glaucoma medicines) to large wallets which can hold fully assembled insulin pens etc.

    I realise that I sound like an advert, but it is a product that I've tried, tested and been impressed with! It may be a solution for those of you who are mobile and need to keep medications cool. The company is based in the UK, but you may have an equivalent over the pond.

    Frio's website is: FRIO :: Home
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2010
  2. allen_idaho

    allen_idaho Well-Known Member

    In an emergency, you might be able to keep insulin cool by building yourself a zeer pot. This is basically a pot-in-pot evaporative cooler which has been in use in the middle east for centuries.

    What you would need is:
    - 1 large clay pot
    - 1 smaller clay pot
    - sand
    - water
    - a damp rag or towel

    To build it, you simply place the smaller pot inside of the larger pot with wet sand between them as an insulator. The damp towel will serve as a lid. You just need to add water to keep the sand damp twice a day and preferably keep the pot out of the sun.

    Insulin itself can be kept unrefrigerated for about 28 days but the longer you keep it left out of refrigeration, the less effective it will be. If it spoils completely, it will not work at all.

  3. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    This may go back too far for most,
    But anyone remember a 'Spring House' or 'Cream House'?

    Usually a spring or wind driven well pump that circulated cool water around 'Cream' or 'Milk' cans so things didn't spoil before used.
    Water was usually channeled to livestock or household purposes before being discharged.

    I'm using the same idea for keeping my battery backup batteries cool in the summer so they live longer.
    Water runs through a poured concrete 'Pit' and circulates around the batteries keeping them cool before moving on to the holding tanks for consumption by home or livestock.
  4. allen_idaho

    allen_idaho Well-Known Member

    Spring Houses are another good option. My great aunt used to use one up until she died about 12 years ago. She lived in a remote cabin with no electricity whatsoever. Except her spring house was fed by a small creek and not a spring.

    Another option, refrigeration-wise would be an ice house if TSHTF during the winter. If done correctly, you could have ice year round.
  5. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    Chopping/cutting ice is not my favorite thing...
    And besides, there are a lot of years around here it doesn't get cold enough for ice blocks to be cut from lakes or whatever...
    If I lived further up north...?

    Right now, I have fridge/freeze running on solar power, so refrigeration is no big deal...
    Don't know what I'd do if that failed, I don't have a full on 'Spring House' built yet, but it's in the planning!
  6. allen_idaho

    allen_idaho Well-Known Member

    You don't need to cut blocks of ice for an ice house to work. You can just use snow. You have to keep in mind that these things were invented for use in desert climates.
  7. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    I actually lived in a big old 'Ice House' someone transported to the river for a 'Cabin',
    Lived there in the summer, and used it for hunting in the winter.
    Keeps WARM in equally as well as keeps 'Cold' in!

    We often don't get much snow, just cold enough to drive the heat bill sky high!
    Not cold enough to freeze lakes over for ice cutting, lack of snow, ect. all contribute to keeping us from getting the source material to make an 'Ice House' work... ICE.

    I guess if someone was deliberate, he could fill containers with water and hope it was going to get cold enough to freeze them solid...
    But in a sustained emergency, one of the things you WOULD NOT get was a weather report, so it would be 'Trial & Error' around here.

    So far (knock on wood!) our solar panels and low voltage fridge/freezer haven't let us down yet!
    Been about 5 years with them, and they work great as long as you don't fan the door too much...

    Chest type freezers are best because they don't loose all the 'Cold' when you open the door!
  8. allen_idaho

    allen_idaho Well-Known Member

    Definately. The chest style freezers use far less electricity than a standard freezer. They are the way to go.

    If you were so inclined, you could probably do the same thing with a fridge.
  9. JeepHammer

    JeepHammer Well-Known Member

    Lots of 12 volt 'Coolers' out there,
    They say they will keep stuff about 30 degrees below outside temp with only a cigarette lighter source.
  10. Steadfast

    Steadfast Member

    have you guys discussed the use of a solar refrigerator to keep insulin and other drugs cold?

    To make one You will need:
    two 250 watt Solar panels
    12 gauge wire
    a solar charge controller (in an EMP faraday cage)
    Inverter that can run a small fridge (in an EMP faraday cage)
    Four 6volt golf cart batteries
    2 small refrigerators. (stored)

    Humulin N expires in almost 3 years
    Humulin R expires in 2 1/2 years
    Novolin N expires in 2 1/2 years
    Novolog expires in 2 1/2 years

    Another advantage of having a solar fridge is tht you can also use it power source for Ham radio transmissions...