Pharmaceutical Track and Trace: What is Track and Trace in Pharma?

The implementation of track & trace for pharmaceuticals lets you pinpoint any item’s location in your supply chain. In this article we’ll answer the question of “what is track and trace in pharma?” and how advanco’s robust system enables you to ensure product identification & manage data with real-time visibility.

Pharmaceutical Track and Trace: What is Track and Trace in Pharma?

Why are track and trace systems used in the pharmaceutical industry?

Track and trace systems are established within the pharmaceutical sector as a mainstream method of fighting counterfeiters who risk the lives of thousands of people across the globe by producing fake medicines. Indeed, pharmaceutical track and trace systems allow an individual package of drugs, or an exact vial of vaccine, to be pinpointed at any stage in the supply chain in real time. These solutions provide a cast-iron guarantee that the product is authentic, giving valuable peace of mind in the ongoing battle against counterfeit goods.

Tracking items ensures that quality officers identify mistakes or disruptions in time for efficient resolution. Collecting and accessing data in real-time allows manufacturers to identify and solve the root cause of problems, preventing repetition and thus saving time and money in the long run.

In addition,  having an automated track and trace system in place enables pharmaceutical manufacturers to streamline data collection and analysis, eliminating the need for manual recording reduces the risk of human error.

Why is track and trace in pharma becoming more regulated?

Pharmaceutical companies are facing increasingly stringent regulations and requirements to record their supply chain data – therefore, track and trace technology has become a vital tool within the manufacturing process. Advanco’s serialization solutions provide clients in the pharmaceutical industry with the ability to see their entire supply chain data clearly, notably where a specific item is in its journey (tracking), and who handled it (tracing). Our robust track and trace systems enable product identification, data management, and real-time visibility, all of which can be applied to drugs, vaccinations, or medical machinery for organizations in pharma.

Against such a backdrop, let’s dive a little deeper into why track and trace is so important for the pharmaceutical sector, why global compliance standards are rising and why advanco is the natural fit as the provider for your track and trace solutions.

Why is track and trace so important for the pharmaceutical sector?

It is important to understand the severe threat to life is caused by the lack of regulation and standardization in pharma, resulting in fake medicines and drugs. According to the World Health Organization, roughly 10% of medical products circulating in in LEDCs and MEDCs are substandard or falsified. In sub-Saharan African nations, this share is believed to be even higher, rising closer to 19-50%. Nearly half a million people are estimated to be killed by counterfeit medicines in sub-Saharan Africa every year, according to data from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

Track and trace solutions allow pharmaceutical manufacturers to do all they can to ensure customers have complete trust in their products, allowing them to keep track of everything in their supply chains, using the latest electronic data reporting and sharing and RFID technologies to encourage traceability. It also increases the speed of the product’s journey to its destination and helps to prevent theft, keeping them safe and preventing damage. In order to prevent illegitimate products from entering the market, as well as simplify recalls for defective products should it be necessary, businesses in the Pharma industry rely heavily on traceability solutions and accessible records to track the details associated with affected drugs or medicines.

Indeed, it is no exaggeration to state that the pharmaceutical industry is integral to the health and wellbeing of every individual across the globe. Therefore, the implications of inadequate track and trace solutions in pharma can be life threatening.

What is global compliance for track and trace in pharma?

The loss, damage, delivery of counterfeit goods, etc can result in significant damage to any company’s reputation and overall integrity, especially that of the pharmaceutical industry. On a practical level, they could also face huge fines, lawsuits and even a complete closure if something goes wrong in the delivery life cycle. Strict requirements are therefore implemented globally to ensure standardisation, with key aspects including serialization solutions, product identification and product authentication, traceability, electronic reporting to regulators, and electronic data-sharing among trading partners. Advanco is committed to these standards, viewing them as essential for improving patient health and safety, combating counterfeit drugs, and securing supply chains.

Tips for implementing a track and trace solution

In order to help organizations efficiently and effectively implement a track and trace solution, the team at advanco have put together some key considerations:

  1. What are your organization’s specific needs and potential obstacles? 
  2. Have you got the security systems in place to ensure that any data associated with the pharmaceutical production chain remains confidential, reliable and scalable? 
  3. Is your business integrating with the right technological systems and solutions to support your needs and ensure a seamless serialization process can be implemented and carried out? 
  4. Is the entirety of your team trained on the serialization process, the importance of it and the implications on the business if it  is not implemented to the highest of standards?

Why choose advanco for your pharmaceutical track and trace needs?

Advanco is established as one of the leading global providers of track and trace solutions for pharma, with a pedigree of over 40 years of experience with product identification services, with 13 years’ specialist experience in the pharmaceutical industry. We are a major player, operating in over 25 countries, and have more than 100 blue-chip clients, comprising some of the leading names in the pharmaceutical sector. Always customer-focused, advanco uses the latest barcode and RFID technologies and has built a reputation as the leading independent provider for Level 3 Item serialization and track and trace solutions throughout the entire supply chain and around any ERP system.

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