Supply chains in the pharmaceutical industry are increasingly international – cross continental or global, even – and at the same time more and more fragmented. The key to getting and keeping insight into these complex chains is in innovative track & trace solutions. During the first Track & Trace Symposium earlier this month, we discussed the added value of the Global Batch Traceability (GBT) and Advanced Track & Trace for Pharmaceuticals (ATTP) tools in an interactive setting.
One system, one truth
At the Track & Trace Symposium, we heard the story of the Dutch blood bank Sanquin by Eva van Egmond. Apart from being a blood bank, Sanquin is also a high-tech pharmaceutical facility that produces lifesaving, plasma-derived medicines.
Insight into their entire supply chain is vital, so that they are able to respond fast to deviations and look backs (donor-related recalls). Obviously, Sanquin has to deal with large volumes of donations. With GBT, Sanquin can quickly identify and flag the bag or container containing the high-risk plasma and it can be retrieved from the chain.
GBT gives insight into and control over the entire supply chain because all data is combined in only one system. This creates a single point of truth and helps pharmaceutical companies not only to perform fast batch searches but also helps to comply to international regulations regarding data integrity.
Validation, serialization, legislation
“What is the worst thing that can happen to a pharmaceutical company?” With this question Oliver Nürnberg, Product Owner Life Sciences at SAP, opened his interesting presentation. Nürnberg mentioned not one but two of the worst things: a bad product hits the market and the emergence of counterfeit products.
Counterfeit products are generally produced by fraudulent third parties and their emergence is largely out of control of pharmaceutical companies. The goal in this situation is therefore to minimize the impact of fraud.
This is where ATTP comes in. This innovative serialization and unit-tracking tool enables medicine-producing companies to validate their products and to integrate their business processes. Nürnberg: “ATTP was specifically developed with the requirements of the industry and legislators in mind. This was truly a co-innovation with the Top-20 companies within the industry.”
To this end, ATTP also allows companies to comply to increasingly strict rules and regulations regarding traceability. The tool enables users to provide the necessary functionality (randomizers, serialization profiles, and integration to packaging lines) and even comes with various country packages that make sure the reports meet all country-specific requirements.
This first-of-its-kind symposium showed that SAP and Goldfish are dedicated to supporting the pharmaceutical industry in their business. As Frans Nieuweboer, Director Life Sciences at itelligence, concluded: “Patients rely on other parties for their safety. They take medication without knowing what it is that they’re taking. It is our duty to prove that the medication we produce is safe – and to detect early on if that quality cannot be guaranteed. We can use best-in-class technologies like GBT and ATTP to be in control and mitigate risks.”
These future-proof tools offer insight, transparency, and compliance for pharmaceutical companies. Equally important: they can play a significant role in patient safety and public health. Curious about the Track & Trace solutions, please contact me for a call or a meeting.