Over the weekend I skimmed through the many responses the FDA has received for their ‘Product Identifiers Under the Drug Supply Chain Security Act Questions and Answers’ draft guidance (see “FDA Posts Two Final DSCSA Guidances And A Draft Product Identifier Q&A Document” and “FDA’s Late Recommendation On Human Readable”). As usual, the most specific, most detailed and most interesting response comes from the Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA). In fact, a few of the other respondents refer to the HDA’s work in the areas covered by the Q&A. Many of the respondents—even those who did not credit HDA—agreed with the HDA’s positions they covered. There were a few different opinions, however. Let’s take a look. Continue reading FDA Gets Comments On Their Draft Q&A on DSCSA Product Identifiers
Verification is an important part of the operation of the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA), and from my observation, it isn’t understood very well. People new to the DSCSA always think “verification” means something beyond what the actual definition is in the law. Late last week the FDA published new draft guidance describing their current thinking about the “verification systems” that members of the supply chain are required by the DSCSA to have in place. It’s an important draft because I suspect not many companies have “verification systems” that have the kind of capabilities spelled out by the FDA. Of course, as usual, it’s only a draft, not for implementation but for comment only. You have until December 24, 2018 to submit comments for consideration by the FDA as they someday make this guidance final. Continue reading DSCSA: Verification Systems Draft Guidance
Just ten weeks before the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) requires drug manufacturers to begin applying a serialized product identifier in barcode and human readable form to drug packages and homogeneous cases, the FDA has recommended a human readable format that differs from what the majority of manufacturers have already chosen. What’s going on here? What options do manufacturers have? Continue reading FDA’s Late Recommendation On Human Readable
Last week the FDA posted final versions of two DSCSA guidance documents, and, a new draft Product Identifier Q&A document. The two final guidance documents include the grandfathering policy and the product identifier compliance policy that delayed enforcement of the product identifier and verification requirements until November 27, 2018. These documents are companions to each other, which is to say that they are pretty tightly related, and that’s why FDA Continue reading FDA Posts Two Final DSCSA Guidances And A Draft Product Identifier Q&A Document
Both, the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) in the US and the Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD) in the EU make use of unique identifier verification in one way or another. Under the FMD, verification is the centerpiece of patient protection. Under the DSCSA, verification is used as a tool to help resolve higher risk use cases, like saleable returns to wholesale distributors, and anytime someone becomes “suspicious” about a collection of drug packages. On the surface, verification of unique identifiers seems simple, but there are some sticky problems that make it complex in some circumstances (see also “Drug Verification: EU Vs US”). Continue reading What’s So Hard About Unique Identifier Verification?
There are lots of impactful requirements in the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA), but there are two whose impact will likely increase the safety of patients far more than all of the others. That is, they are the most helpful requirements. Do they include serialization? Verification? Transaction documentation? Wholesaler and 3PL licensing? Not even close.
The two requirements that I believe will have the biggest impact on the safety of drugs in the US supply chain are the requirement to only engage in transactions with authorized trading partners, and the lot number being included in the 2D barcode. Let me explain. Continue reading The 2 Most Helpful Requirements In The DSCSA
Last month GS1 US published the results of an assessment of the implementation progress by drug manufacturers of the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) serialization requirements. It contains troubling indications of the next problem the industry will face in its quest for DSCSA compliance: too many unusable barcodes.
Big deal, you say? That kind of complacency could come back to haunt you later this year. Now is the time to look at your own packages and address any deficiencies. Here is a look at what GS1 US found in their assessment. Continue reading Wholesalers Find Troubling Results In DSCSA Barcode Assessment
The Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA) was constructed back in 2013 by Congressional staff, with input from the FDA, members of the industry and who knows who else. There was one bill in the House of Representatives and a different bill in the Senate. Once these bills passed their respective houses, they formed a conference committee who merged the two bills into the final text that we know today as the DQSA (see “It’s Official, President Obama Signs H.R. 3204, DQSA, Into Law”). Chapter 2 of that act is the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA). Most readers of RxTrace haven’t forgotten that history but it is important to look back at that history to explain why most companies can ignore certain requirements in the law. That’s right. There are requirements in the law that you can ignore because they will not be enforced by anyone. They are the result of the disjoint way the DQSA was written. Let me explain. Continue reading 3 DSCSA Requirements You Can Totally Ignore