I was a little surprised at how heated the discussion was at the breakfast table back during last year’s Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA) Traceability Seminar. I chose an open seat at a table with people from multiple drug manufacturers and someone from GS1 US. Our conversation at the table started out typically—the weather, the previous day’s speakers—the usual. I had recently been thinking about the human readable portion of the Product Identifier mandated by the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) (see “The DSCSA Product Identifier On Drug Packages”), so I asked everyone what their company was planning to do? Continue reading Human Readable Text Controversy
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
Maybe I’m just hyper sensitive to all things blockchain right now, but it sure seemed like the topic of blockchain permeated the sessions and the halls at last week’s GS1 Connect conference, GS1 US’s annual membership event. Oddly, all of the official blockchain content was outside the Healthcare track. The technology is certainly applicable in all industries and apparently there is interest in it outside of the healthcare vertical within GS1 US. But what I observed there leads me to think we are very close to an important tipping point. Continue reading Blockchain Reigns At GS1 Connect 2017
Last week, GS1 US published a free DSCSA resource that every RxTrace reader must have. It’s called “Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) by the Pharmaceutical Industry in Preparing for the U.S. DSCSA” and it can be downloaded free after registration. Do it now, then come back and finish reading this essay.
The document is 42 pages in PDF form and it Continue reading New Must-Read DSCSA Resource
Today, Peggy Staver will officially retire from Pfizer, after a career of 35 years. Those of us who have worked on figuring out how to implement anti-counterfeiting solutions that work in the U.S. pharma supply chain over the last 15 years or so will miss her friendly, inquisitive and steady voice very much. Continue reading Thank You Peggy Staver!
Recently, several of the larger U.S. wholesale distributors have sent letters to their suppliers to review what they expect from them relative to the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA). You may recall that these companies have provided requirements in advance of earlier DSCSA deadlines (see “U.S. Drug Wholesale Distributors Provide Direction To Manufacturers“). These expectations are aimed at the November 27, 2017 serialization requirements and beyond. Continue reading DSCSA Serialization: What Wholesalers Expect
Heart Failure is a human condition that is characterized by several easily identifiable symptoms, including fatigue, difficulty breathing and in its later stages, gurgled breathing. My mother and my mother-in-law both suffered from heart failure during their decline. Analogous to heart failure in humans is a condition of an identifier system that is near the end of its useful life that we can call “identifier failure”. At the end of November, a new FDA final guidance called “Requirements for Foreign and Domestic Establishment Registration and Listing for Human Drugs, Including Drugs That Are Regulated Under a Biologics License Application, and Animal Drugs” went into effect. Buried deep within this 200+ page document is the official announcement that signaled the National Drug Code (NDC) identifier system is now afflicted with this end-stage condition. The NDC won’t last long now, and there is no longer any excuse for inaction. The need for a replacement is now urgent. Continue reading NDC Nearing Its End, Afflicted by ‘Identifier Failure’
If your email inbox is anything like mine it has recently been swamped with articles and webinar notices about the possible use of blockchain technology to solve multiple challenges in healthcare. I recently attended a very interesting day-long workshop on that very topic.
So is blockchain a real solution, or is it just the latest over-hyped buzzword that is being promoted by people who don’t understand the real needs of healthcare companies? I’ll tell you what I think. But first, a little background.
Blockchain technology is a way of encapsulating information within a layer of structured data that multiple parties can use as the basis for trust in the accuracy of the source of that information. It’s all about adding trust to information that is shared between parties. Trust is just one of the many Continue reading Could Blockchain Technology Be Used For DSCSA Compliance?