Tag: fda consulting services

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued final guidance for Biologics industry executives to help define modifications to existing products and update submission procedures.  The primary focus of the guidance is to help biologics industry employees responsible for reporting understand which type of risk category is appropriate for updated variations in chemistry, manufacturing, and controls (CMC).

 

The guidance is applicable to CMC products with an existing biologics license application (BLA) currently approved by the FDA. It’s a critical update since any Biologics company or regulatory partners must notify the FDA about every change to an approved BLA under the Code of Federal Regulations (21 CFR 601.12).


Need help adhering to the New Guidance? Contact Us Now →


FDA submission data

 

FDA Guidance

The final FDA guidance goes into detail about each post-approval change in the product, including production process, quality controls, equipment and facilities, responsible employees, and established labeling. Expanded submission data will potentially provide greater detail about the the risk profile related to the changes, and how revised changes impact the intended safety or efficacy of the product.

 

Assessing and implementing manufacturing changes is laid out in great detail in the FDA guidance. Comparability data will be used to show variations of the product pre- and post- changes. The comparability analysis is necessary to help gauge possible effects of the product changes. Data from the analysis will be represented through a variety of sources, including a combination of testing, validation studies, and non-clinical or clinical studies.

 

FDA submission procedure

 

More importantly, the guidance provides a greater amount of detail about the updated FDA submission procedure. A significant focus of the guidance acknowledges the opportunity for adverse effects and how to measure and minimize based on data about the revised formulation. The biologic submission must show reference information that considers the new identity, strength of the product, quality of the product, and purity or potency of the product.

 

The three unique types of Biologics reporting includes Prior Approval Supplement, Changes Being Effected in 30 Days/Changes Being Effected (CBE30/CBE) and an Annual Report:

 

Prior Approval Support (PAS)

  • This includes changes that have significant potential for an adverse effect on product quality. The PAS must be approved by the FDA before a Biologics company can distribute any updated BLA approved product to the market involving the changes.

 

Guidance Changes Being Effected in 30 Days/Changes Being Effected (CBE30/CBE)

  • This includes changes that have a moderate potential to have an adverse effect on product quality. The CBE30/CBE requires an applicant to report the change to the FDA in a supplement at least 30 days before distribution of the product to the market.

 

Annual Report (AR)

  • This includes changes that have a minimal potential to have an adverse effect on product quality.

 

FDA process validation

 

Assessing the impact of the change on product quality is critically important in the reporting submission.  Reporting data should include prior knowledge and findings from product development activity. Documentation surrounding process validation activities and manufacturing expertise of the approved BLA product are also requested.

 

Quality risk management activities or pre-commercial studies that provide expanded awareness of the effects of the changes can also be very valuable for FDA decision makers. Finally, a cumulative impact assessment of multiple changes on the updated BLA product can help ensure post-market surveillance activities are aligned between the FDA and Biologics company.

 

Quality Management System

 

References to a robust quality culture appear throughout the guidance, including developing of robust manufacturing processes and process controls. Innovative process validation techniques and analytical testing are listed as critical drivers Biologics companies should practice to help mitigate risks associated with manufacturing changes.

 

Having an effective quality risk management system allows Biologics industry executives to make knowledgeable choices regarding manufacturing variations. The quality system data increases the confidence of product quality and process consistency for both executives and the FDA. Formal and informal risk assessments to support of post-approval manufacturing changes increases the accuracy of a more effective assessment of the change, which can increase the speed of the FDA’s decision.

 

About RCA’s Biologics & Biotech Consulting Services

Regulatory Compliance Associates® can assist you in ensuring the quality of your biologics or biosimilar product during its entire lifecycle. From pre-market to post-market reviews, inspection, and compliance, our Biotech consulting experts can shepherd your biologics through design, labeling, promotion, production, and testing. Our Biologics consultants & consulting services include:

 

Regulatory Affairs

 

Regulatory affairs is Regulatory Compliance Associates®  backbone and we fully understand the complexities of the biologics industry. Our biotech consulting expertise spans all facets and levels of Regulatory Affairs, from early phase & bioanalytical sciences through late phase and post approval.

 

  • Preclinical & CMC Consulting
    • FDA Meetings & Briefing Package Assistance
    • Clinical Trial Applications
    • Marketing Applications
    • Medical Writing
  • Lifecycle Management
  • Submission Planning & Strategic Support
    • eCTD Publishing & Submissions
  • Strategic Consulting & Intelligence
  • US Agent
  • Project Management Support
  • Clinical Development Support
    • Clinical Research Organization (CRO) Sourcing
  • Analytical Development Support
    • Bioassay Design & Validation
    • Immunoassay Support
    • Statistical Analysis & Specification Setting

 

Compliance Assurance

 

Biotech ConsultingIncreasingly, life science companies are feeling the pressure of greater scrutiny by regulators, and responding by developing sustainable compliance strategies. Whether it’s biologics consultants preparing for an audit, developing a response to an FDA finding, or remediation to an adverse event, Regulatory Compliance Associates® biotech consulting global team can help.

 

  • Assessments
    • Current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP)
    • Corrective & Preventive Action (CAPA), Investigations & Deviations
    • Facility & Maintenance 
    • Data Integrity
    • Quality System Gap Assessment
  • Audits
    • Supplier Audits
    • CRO Audits
    • cGMP Compliance Audits: Manufacturing, Pilot Plant, Laboratory
    • cGLP Audits
    • Good Clinical Practices
  • Preparation, Training & Inspection Readiness
    • cGMP Fundamentals (Annual Training Required by Regulations)
    • Quality System Regulation
    • Risk Management
    • Investigations, Deviations & CAPA & Root Cause Analysis
    • Validation & Technology Transfer
    • Purchasing Controls & Supplier Management
    • Document Management & Change Control
    • Audit Readiness
    • Quality Culture & Management Responsibility
    • Data Integrity & Good Documentation Practices (GDP) Centered on How the Data is Recorded, How to Correct an Error, and How to Document the Reason(s) for the Error

 

Quality Assurance

 

Regulatory Compliance Associates® Quality consulting services include assessments, strategy, implementations, staff augmentations, and identification of quality metrics. Our biologics consultants goal is to ensure continuous improvement, aligning with your business needs and goals. Our biotech consulting subject matter experts have experience spanning major corporations and start-ups.

 

We know firsthand how to achieve, maintain, and improve quality, and we excel in transferring this knowledge to your organization.

 

  • Quality Management System Implementation
  • SOP Development
  • Document Control Systems
  • Change Control
  • Laboratory Operations & Control

 

Remediation Strategy & Response

 

Regulatory Compliance Associates® is widely recognized within the life science industry and global regulatory agencies for its ability to help companies successfully resolve complex regulatory challenges, including remediation. With a proven track record of success, Regulatory Compliance Associates® biologics consultants have significant experience with the development of responses to 483 Observations, Warning Letters, Untitled Letters and Consent Decrees.

 

  • Regulatory Action
    • 483 Response & Remediation
    • Warning Letter Response & Remediation
    • Consent Decree Response & Remediation
    • Oversight Services
  • Consulting
    • Comprehensive Audits
    • Remediation Plan Development & Implementation
  • Manufacturing Support
    • Re-validation of Existing Equipment & Processes
    • Remediation of System Deficiencies Related to, Manufacturing Process, Equipment, or Facility 
    • Facility Improvements (Aging Facilities) 

 

Strategic Consulting

 

Whether it’s a corporate needs analysis, corporate growth / transformation strategy or due diligence / acquisition, Regulatory Compliance Associates®  worldwide biotech consulting experience can help ensure a successful mix of top-notch advice and people so your engagement is on time, on budget, and you’re never embroiled in a costly mistake.

 

  • Portfolio Management
  • Mergers & Acquisitions / Due Diligence
  • Staffing Support

 

About RCA

 

Biotech ConsultingRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) provides biologics consulting & biotech consulting to the following industries for resolution of life science challenges:

 

 

We understand the complexities of running a life science business and possess areas of expertise that include every facet of R&D, operations, regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing. We are used to working on the front lines and thriving in the scrutiny of FDA, Health Canada, MHRA and globally-regulated companies.

 

As your partners, we can negotiate the potential minefield of regulatory compliance and regulatory due diligence with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our unique expertise and experience.

 

  • Founded in 2000
  • Headquartered in Wisconsin (USA)
  • Expertise backed by over 500 industry subject matter experts
  • Acquired by Sotera Health in 2021

 

About Sotera Health

 

The name Sotera Health was inspired by Soteria, the Greek goddess of safety, and reflects the Company’s unwavering commitment to its mission, Safeguarding Global Health®.

 

Biotech ConsultingSotera Health Company, along with its three best-in-class businesses – Sterigenics®Nordion® and Nelson Labs®, is a leading global provider of mission-critical end-to-end sterilization solutions and lab testing and advisory services for the healthcare industry. With a combined tenure across our businesses of nearly 200 years and our industry-recognized scientific and technological expertise, we help to ensure the safety of over 190 million patients and healthcare practitioners around the world every year.

 

We are a trusted partner to more than 5,800 customers in over 50 countries, including 40 of the top 50 medical device companies and 8 of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies.

 

To begin the Regulatory Compliance Associates® scoping process today, please enter your information in the blue form below and click the submit button at the bottom of the webpage. 

The USA Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently provided updated regulatory guidance for Product Lifecycle Management in the pharmaceutical industry. The guidance helps pharmaceutical companies and manufacturers better understand the administration of post-approval chemistry, manufacturing, and controls changes.

 

Lifecycle Management

 

The guidance provides new insights into lifecycle management concepts for both new and existing pharmaceutical products, including chemical and biologics. The FDA regulatory team looked to synchronize its updated guidance more closely to ICH guidelines used with other global regulatory agencies.

 

The benefit realized by pharmaceutical companies would be options for reducing duplicate clinical studies and increasing the standardization of safety information reporting. By revising facets of FDA marketing application submissions as well, the Agency appears to be taking a more holistic approach to improving drug development quality and pharmaceutical manufacturing strategy.

 


Looking for help Managing your product’s Life Cycle? Talk to our Experts →


 

Manufacturing Process

 

Changes include language revisions to surrounding regional legal frameworks, an expanded clarification of critical process parameters, and identifying established conditions for manufacturing processes. One important revision for regulatory affairs employees is the new recommended content of the product lifecycle management document and its location within the technical file. Clarity revisions were also made to further expand on the use of available tools described in the guideline for master files.

 

Regulatory Submission

 

The new FDA guidance also expanded its language on post-approval chemistry, manufacturing, and controls changes. With additional tools and principles intended to improve the industry’s management of post-approval changes, FDA leadership is hoping to increase transparency between both industry employees and regulatory authorities.

 

The benefit to pharmaceutical companies should be a deeper understanding of how product and process knowledge will contribute in the real world to post-approval changes that require a regulatory submission. By defining the level of reporting categories, industry experts should experience a deeper understanding of risk compared to product quality.

 

Quality Management System

 

The new tools and principles are designed to improve data input into a company’s quality system. The goal is to enhance the industry’s ability to manage many chemistry, manufacturing, and controls changes that have a lower priority needed of regulatory oversight.

 

At the same time, many at the FDA are hopeful the tools and principles could result in fewer Marketing Authorization Application submissions that increase the associated regulatory burden. The guidance should increase both operational efficiency and regulatory flexibility when implemented with the proper regulatory framework and applied with widely accepted risk management principles in the pharmaceutical industry.

 

Pharmaceutical Consultant & Pharma Consulting Services 

product lifecycleRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) has helped thousands of pharmaceutical companies meet regulatory, compliance, quality assurance, and remediation challenges. With more than 20 years of experience with FDA, Health Canada, EU and global regulatory agencies worldwide, Regulatory Compliance Associates® offers leading pharmaceutical consultants. We’re one of the few pharma consulting companies that can help you navigate the challenges associated with industry regulations.

Our pharmaceutical consulting firm includes over 500 seasoned FDA, Health Canada & EU compliance consultants and regulatory affairs experts who understand industry complexities. It’s a pharma consultancy founded by industry executives of the pharmaceutical industry. Every pharmaceutical industry consultant on the Regulatory Compliance Associates® team knows the unique inner workings of the regulatory process. 

 

Client Solutions

Whether you’re in the product planning, development or pharmaceutical lifecycle management stage or need a remediation strategy for a compliance crisis, Regulatory Compliance Associates® will guide you through every pharma consulting step of the regulatory process and create a customized approach depending on your product and your pharma company’s individual needs. Our clients include:

  • Companies new to FDA, Health Canada or EU regulations and the pharmaceutical industry
  • Start-up organizations with novel submissions to 510(k) submissions from multi-national corporations
  • Investment firms seeking private equity due diligence for pre-acquisition and post-deal research
  • Law firms seeking pharmaceutical consulting firm expertise in the remediation of warning letters, consent decrees, 483’s or import bans

 

Regulatory Affairs

Regulatory affairs is Regulatory Compliance Associates® backbone. We exceed other pharma consulting companies with industry experts experienced in complexities of the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical industries. Our pharma consulting expertise spans all facets and levels of Regulatory Affairs, from Regulatory Support for New Products to Life Cycle Management, to other services like Outsourced Regulatory Affairs, Submissions, Training, and more.

As your partner, we can negotiate the potential assessment minefield of pharmaceuticals with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our breadth and depth of knowledge and experience. We offer the following pharma consulting regulatory affairs services for pharmaceutical companies.

  • New Product Support
  • Product Lifecycle
  • Other Regulatory Services

 

Compliance Assurance

The regulations process surrounding pharmaceutical companies can be tricky for even the most experienced industry veteran to understand. Just one misstep could mean significant and lasting consequences for your business. At Regulatory Compliance Associates®, we offer the pharma consulting experience and pharma consultants necessary to guide you through the quality compliance process.

  • Assessments
  • Audits
  • Regulatory Agency Response
  • Preparation and Training
  • Inspection Readiness

 

Quality Assurance

Regulatory Compliance Associates® Quality consulting includes assessments, strategy, implementations, staff augmentations, and identification of quality metrics to ensure continuous improvement. Our pharma consultants understand the strategic thinking needed to align your business needs and goals. Regulatory Compliance Associates® pharmaceutical industry consultant are quality experts with experience spanning major corporations and start-ups. Our pharmaceutical consulting firm knows firsthand how to achieve, maintain, and improve quality, and we excel in transferring pharma consulting knowledge to your organization.

  • 21 CFR Part 11
  • Data Integrity
  • Manufacturing Support
  • Facility Support

 

Remediation 

Regulatory Compliance Associates® has significant experience and a proven approach to managing FDA Warning Letters, Consent Decrees, Remediation and other serious regulatory situations. Our pharma consultants know how to partner with executive, legal, and communication teams, and will assist management with a response that will be accepted by the regulatory agency and be realistic to execute. Regulatory Compliance Associates® pharma regulatory consultants will develop a comprehensive proof book of documented evidence demonstrating the corrective action taken to remediate non-compliant issues.

In addition, Regulatory Compliance Associates® pharmaceutical industry consultant will prepare a comprehensive pharma consulting strategy to assist in your remediation efforts, drive continuous improvement, and maintain compliance with the regulations.

  • Regulatory Action
  • Warning Letter
  • 483 Observation
  • Oversight Services

 

About RCA

product lifecycleRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) provides pharmaceutical consulting to the following industries for resolution of life science challenges:

We understand the complexities of running a life science business and possess areas of expertise that include every facet of R&D, operations, regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing. We are used to working on the front lines and thriving in the scrutiny of FDA, Health Canada, MHRA and globally-regulated companies.

As your partners, we can negotiate the potential minefield of regulatory compliance and regulatory due diligence with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our unique expertise and experience.

  • Founded in 2000
  • Headquartered in Wisconsin (USA)
  • Expertise backed by over 500 industry subject matter experts
  • Acquired by Sotera Health in 2021

 

About Sotera Health

The name Sotera Health was inspired by Soteria, the Greek goddess of safety, and reflects the Company’s unwavering commitment to its mission, Safeguarding Global Health®.

product lifecycleSotera Health Company, along with its three best-in-class businesses – Sterigenics®Nordion® and Nelson Labs®, is a leading global provider of mission-critical end-to-end sterilization solutions and lab testing and advisory services for the healthcare industry. With a combined tenure across our businesses of nearly 200 years and our industry-recognized scientific and technological expertise, we help to ensure the safety of over 190 million patients and healthcare practitioners around the world every year.

We are a trusted partner to more than 5,800 customers in over 50 countries, including 40 of the top 50 medical device companies and 8 of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies.

 

To begin the Regulatory Compliance Associates® scoping process today, please enter your information in the blue form below and click the submit button at the bottom of the webpage. 

 

regulatory compliance

Regulatory Compliance Associates® will be exhibiting at CPhI North America 2023 in Philadelphia with Sterigenics and Nelson Labs. Stop by booths #934 and #932 to meet experts from each team to learn how we can provide you with a complete solution for any of your projects. Together we understand your business and are prepared to discuss solutions to your regulatory, quality, compliance, sterilization, and lab testing needs to help ensure the safety of your product and process.

 

About CPhI NA

CPhI organizes the most important and widespread series of global pharmaceutical events. Our gatherings are both renowned and revered—but it didn’t start in North America. With massive events throughout Asia, South America, Europe, and beyond…more than 500,000 powerful and respected pharma players from every aspect of the supply chain understand that CPhI is where they connect to learn, grow, and conduct business. With a 30-year tradition and an infrastructure fine-tuned to unite buyers, sellers, and industry trailblazers, we expanded this iconic worldwide events portfolio into the most progressive mega market on earth.

 

Client Solutions

Whether you’re in the product planning, development or pharmaceutical lifecycle management stage or need a remediation strategy for a compliance crisis, RCA® will guide you through every step of the regulatory process and create a customized approach depending on your product and your pharma company’s individual needs. Our clients include:

  • Companies new to FDA, Health Canada or EU regulations and the pharmaceutical industry
  • Start-up organizations with novel submissions to 510(k) submissions from multi-national corporations
  • Investment firms seeking private equity due diligence for pre-acquisition and post-deal research
  • Law firms seeking expertise in the remediation of warning letters, consent decrees, 483’s or import bans

 

Regulatory Affairs

Regulatory affairs is Regulatory Compliance Associates® backbone and we fully understand the complexities of the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical industries. Our expertise spans all facets and levels of Regulatory Affairs, from Regulatory Support for New Products to Life Cycle Management, to other services like Outsourced Regulatory Affairs, Submissions, Training, and more.

As your partner, we can negotiate the potential assessment minefield of pharmaceuticals with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our breadth and depth of knowledge and experience. We offer the following four regulatory affairs services for pharmaceutical companies.

  • New Product Support
  • Product Lifecycle
  • Other Regulatory Services

 

Compliance Assurance

The regulations process surrounding pharmaceutical companies can be tricky for even the most experienced industry veteran to understand, and just one misstep could mean significant and lasting consequences for your business. At RCA®, we offer the experience and resources necessary to guide you in quality compliance.

  • Assessments
  • Audits
  • Regulatory Agency Response
  • Preparation and Training
  • Inspection Readiness

 

Quality Assurance

Regulatory Compliance Associates® Quality Assurance services include assessments, strategy, implementations, staff augmentations, and identification of quality metrics to ensure continuous improvement, aligning with your business needs and goals. Our consultants are quality experts with experience spanning major corporations and start-ups. We know firsthand how to achieve, maintain, and improve quality, and we excel in transferring this knowledge to your organization.

  • 21 CFR 210
  • 21 CFR 211
  • Data Integrity
  • Computerized System Validation
  • Manufacturing Support
  • Facility Support

 

Remediation 

Regulatory Compliance Associates® has significant experience and a proven approach to managing FDA Warning Letters, Consent Decrees, Remediation and other serious regulatory situations. We know how to partner with executive, legal, and communication teams, and will assist management with a response that will be accepted by the regulatory agency and be realistic to execute. We can develop a comprehensive proof book of documented objective evidence demonstrating the corrective actions taken to remediate non-compliant issues. In addition, RCA can help prepare a comprehensive strategy to assist in your remediation efforts, drive continuous improvement, and maintain compliance with the regulations.

 

About RCA

regulatory complianceRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) provides regulatory compliance consulting to the following industries for resolution of life science challenges:

We understand the complexities of running a life science business and possess areas of expertise that include every facet of R&D, operations, regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing. Our life science consultants are used to working on the front lines and thriving in the scrutiny of FDA, Health Canada, MHRA and globally-regulated companies.

As your partners, we can negotiate the potential minefield of regulatory compliance and regulatory due diligence with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our unique expertise and experience.

  • Founded in 2000
  • Expertise backed by over 500 industry subject matter experts
  • Acquired by Sotera Health in 2021

 

About Sotera Health

The name Sotera Health was inspired by Soteria, the Greek goddess of safety, and reflects the Company’s unwavering commitment to its mission, Safeguarding Global Health®.

regulatory complianceSotera Health Company, along with its three best-in-class businesses – Sterigenics®Nordion® and Nelson Labs®, is a leading global provider of mission-critical end-to-end sterilization solutions and lab testing and advisory services for the healthcare industry. With a combined tenure across our businesses of nearly 200 years and our industry-recognized scientific and technological expertise, we help to ensure the safety of over 190 million patients and healthcare practitioners around the world every year.

 

We are a trusted partner to more than 5,800 customers in over 50 countries, including 40 of the top 50 medical device companies and 8 of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies.

 

To begin the Regulatory Compliance Associates® scoping process today, please enter your information in the blue form below and click the submit button at the bottom of the webpage. 

 

 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently published (June 2021) four new guidance documents to help accelerate supply chain security and new product tracing requirements in the pharmaceutical industry. While most countries have implemented firmer regulations over the last decade, this new guidance is timely in the United States as industry executives have been encouraged by the Biden Administration to reexamine security protocols in the wake of prominent cyberattacks.

 

The Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) was originally designed as a framework for manufacturers, wholesalers, and dispensers to comply with laws that accomplish a safer, secure, and entrusted drug supply chain. A primary objective of DSCSA is to develop models and strategies to reduce the distribution of counterfeit, stolen, contaminated, or otherwise harmful drugs. These new FDA guidances include protocols for developing data architecture systems and how industry executives can optimize interoperability during the design and build phase. The DCSCA regulatory deadline is November, 27 2023.


Need help implementing this new Guidance? Contact Us Now →


Drug Packaging

 

As part of the DSCSA, pharmaceutical manufacturers and repackagers are required to add a product identifier on drug packaging. The product identifier includes the product national drug code (NDC), serial number, lot number and expiration date for each package. It must be in both human- and machine-readable form (e.g. two-dimensional data matrix barcode). This is designed to help downstream partners (e.g. repackagers, wholesale distributors, and dispensers) associate the information encoded in the barcode with readable text used by Logistics teams. The updated human-readable format includes:

 

FDA Security Guidance

  • NDC: [insert product’s NDC]
  • SERIAL: [insert product’s serial number]
  • LOT: [insert product’s lot number]
  • EXP: [insert product’s expiration date]

 

Expiration Date

 

For select products where an expiration date includes only year and month due to space limitations, the drug’s actual expiration date is recommended to be the last day of the calendar month included in the human-readable expiration date on the drug package label.

 

Product Identifier

 

Each finished or unfinished drug is subject to regulatory listing requirements. The product identifier is a standardized graphic composed of an alphanumeric serial number (up to 20 characters) that helps identify the product and package configuration. Product identifiers must be affixed or imprinted on the smallest individual saleable unit of a product, which also includes all product sold to a dispenser.

 

National Drug Code

 

Each product identifier has a unique NDC. The NDC is a FDA-assigned 3-segment format (10 or 11-digit number) to identify its labeler, product, and package size and type. In select instances, the linear barcode requirements from 21 CFR 181 201.25 will stay in effect for additional FDA-regulated products and packaging. This digital fingerprint of data will be used to accelerate the regulatory learning process

 

Suspect/Illegitimate Products

 

The revised FDA guidance documents also now provide increased clarity regarding the FDA’s current interpretation of “suspect” and “illegitimate” products. “Suspect” and “illegitimate” products are defined as:

 

  • “counterfeit”
  • “diverted”
  • “stolen”
  • “fraudulent transaction”
  • “unfit for distribution”

 

Artificial Intelligence

 

As artificial intelligence and machine learning modernize the supply chain over time, it’s not unreasonable to imagine the new bar codes could detect medication errors in real time for healthcare professionals and pharmacists. This could provide alerts to validate industry professionals are:

 

  • Giving the right drug,
  • Via the right dose,
  • Via the right route of administration,
  • To the right patient,
  • At the right time.

 

Regulatory Agency Response

 

Specific scenarios designed for risk management of a suspect product entering the pharmaceutical supply chain are also referenced. The guidance provides examples of when manufacturers should notify the FDA of a high risk product that may be or is illegitimate. Industry executives are also encouraged to collaborate with the Agency to help refine existing processes for terminating notifications.

 

This new clarity provides pharmaceutical executives a further glimpse into the FDA’s interpretation of system attributes necessary for secure product tracing inside the marketplace. The language is noticeably more detailed at the package level and provides supporting commentary for avoiding supply chain disruptions and enhanced drug distribution security that goes into effect in November 2023.

 

About RCA

pharmaceutical consultantsRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) provides worldwide services to the following industries for resolution of compliance and regulatory challenges:

 

We understand the complexities of running a life science business and possess areas of expertise that include every facet of R&D, operations, regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing. We are used to working on the front lines and thriving in the scrutiny of FDA-and globally-regulated companies.

As your partners, we can negotiate the potential minefield of regulatory compliance and private equity due diligence with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our unique expertise and experience.

 

To begin the Regulatory Compliance Associates® scoping process today, please enter your information in the blue form below and click the submit button at the bottom of the webpage. 

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently expanded on its clarification of a virtual audit, and how new manufacturing protocols in the COVID-19 environment will evolve. Travel constraints continue to impact the industry, especially in countries like India where a tremendous outbreak of COVID cases erupted in April 2021.

 

“This does show that indeed, we are very much interested in doing these remote interactive investigations, you know, especially the ones with video streaming technology.” said Michael Kopcha, director of the Office of Pharmaceutical Quality in the agency’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.


Looking for help preparing for the new guidance? Contact Us Now →


After reviewing recommendations from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the UK Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory products Agency (UK MHRA), the FDA continues to address the questions many pharmaceutical companies and partners have voiced during the pandemic. FDA officials commented that, due to these early learnings from other global regulatory bodies, they have recently expanded their recommendations for virtual audit best practices and new criteria of considering when to conduct a remote inspection.

 

Two of the initial primary use cases for virtual pharmaceutical inspections mentioned by the FDA include records requests and on-site inspectional work. While developing the new virtual audit process is still ongoing, one recommendation is Pharmaceutical companies should choose a proven regulatory partner to assist with the audit. Agency executives explained they will not be engaging vendors to perform virtual audits on behalf of the FDA.

virtual audit

 

One looming issue to be remedied is will virtual audits be allowed for facilities with serious good manufacturing practice (GMP) violations. FDA officials have expanded on their risk-based approach to prioritization in deciding which sites may qualify. An expanded virtual audit strategy continues to be a work-in-progress by agency officials including defining which companies qualify for an FDA virtual inspection and, more importantly, in what order the virtual audits may happen.

 

GMP violations involve either FDA warning letters or action-indicated site classifications based on the possible corrective actions needed. If the corrective actions needed for a facility can be successfully addressed remotely, it may become more likely that the number of hybrid virtual inspections authorized by the FDA will continue to grow. However, agency official commentary concluded that each facility will be examined by the FDA team on an individual basis with consideration of potential violations involved being a primary decision-making driver.

 

The good news for Pharmaceutical industry executives is it appears the FDA is willing to learn from international regulatory experiences and potentially even collaborate using technology in new ways to increase the FDA’s ability to continue operations. Global travel limitations will more than likely impact every industry for the foreseeable future in 2021 until the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more widely administered.

 

About RCA

pharmaceutical consultantsRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) provides worldwide services to the following industries for resolution of compliance and regulatory challenges:

 

 

We understand the complexities of running a life science business and possess areas of expertise that include every facet of R&D, operations, regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing. We are used to working on the front lines and thriving in the scrutiny of FDA-and globally-regulated companies.

 

As your partners, we can negotiate the potential minefield of regulatory compliance and private equity due diligence with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our unique expertise and experience.

 

 

To begin the Regulatory Compliance Associates® scoping process today, please enter your information in the blue form below and click the submit button at the bottom of the webpage. 

Since the Pandemic became global in 2020, the FDA has been requesting documents from firms in advance of or in lieu of an inspection. This authority comes from the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) in Section 704(a)(4). However, while they have not adopted doing FDA remote inspections in place of an onsite inspection, they have stated publicly they are considering the possibility and virtual audits have become very common. 

 

FDA is still conducting onsite inspections and has submitted for new employee headcount in 2022 to reduce the existing backlog. Each inspection is carefully considered on a case-by-case basis where there is an imminent public health need. Factors such as risk to the FDA investigator and site personnel are also considered when determining if a virtual audit is appropriate.

 

Onsite inspections could be the standard inspection with the investigators staying in the facility the entire time or it could be a hybrid approach where the investigators spend some time in the facility and other time doing remote FDA reviews and conducting video interviews.

 

2022 will bring a new wave of inspections to the medical device and pharmaceutical industry. So how can you prepare in advance? And what does good look like from a virtual inspection process? Below are some thoughts for your team to consider.


Ready to Conduct a Mock Virtual Audit? Contact Us Now →


How Would a Virtual Inspection Work?

Virtual health authority inspection is accelerating as the Pandemic continues. FDA registrations simply don’t end and some health authorities outside the US have already done remote inspections already (e.g. the EMA). However, while the FDA has not done a true remote inspection, they have done many hybrid inspections.

 

What does the hybrid approach mean?

 

It is part of onsite work and part offsite/remote work. With the hybrid FDA format, the FDA uses tools like video chat for activities like virtual interviews. They also use technology like secure shared online folders for offsite document review. Companies prepared to manage FDA inspections under this new method stand the best chance of success in an inspection.

 

The FDA could start with a records request and then come onsite, or vice versa. Remember, if it is a true inspection the FDA must provide the most senior ranking person at the site a Notice of Inspection, Form FDA 482, at the very start of the inspection. If the Form 482 isn’t issued, then it is likely a records request utilizing their Section 704(a)(4) authorities.

 

FDA virtual inspection

 

FDA record requests should follow the process and guidance outlined in their internal Staff Manual Guide, SMG 9004.1 Policy and Procedures for Requesting Records In Advance of or In Lieu of a Drug Inspection. Think of the SMG as an internal procedure for the FDA. If you are curious you can find it at this link: Staff Manual Guide 9004.1 (fda.gov)

 

 

Bottom line, if the FDA’s request comes through a call or email then it is not an inspection. It is a records request and should follow the procedures in SMG 9004.1. If they show up onsite, present a Form 482, then it is an inspection. Then the inspection could stay all onsite or it could be a hybrid approach, as noted above.  

 

Planning for an FDA Virtual Inspection

With the current pandemic, FDA has been providing a little advanced notice of the inspection, usually a few days to a week. The notice is directed less at giving companies time to prepare and instead intended to ensure the required personnel, who may be working offsite, are available. But prior planning precludes poor performance, so prepare well beforehand to manage a hybrid virtual inspection.

 

Some recommendations for inspection prep and readiness are as follows:

  • Determine who in the company will host the FDA inspection. Whether it’s onsite or virtual or hybrid you’ll want to designate a host. This distinction lets you train someone for the role, which helps streamline the process and eliminates last-minute challenges
  • Who will be the scribe and how will they take notes and communicate with the site team?
  • Determine who will step in as the back-up host and scribe in case the primaries are out sick.
  • Think through how the FDA inspection will flow, from the time it starts, through the facility tour, document requests and employee interviews.
  • If a virtual walk-through is conducted do you have sufficient Wi-Fi capabilities across the entire facility to avoid glitches in the audit and video.
  • How will you do the video? Use a phone camera or a real video camera.
  • Make sure you have the equipment ready to go and have tested it throughout the site.
  • How do you plan to maintain appropriate social distancing? Some companies have set up conference rooms complete with plexiglass barriers, tape markers on the floor and separated seating. In other cases, some activities are conducted outdoors, weather permitting.

 

Some additional helpful tips based on our experience with other clients are:

  • Collecting documents: This one can take a little time and it’s suggested that you start with the basics that you know the investigator will request, for example, a general site presentation, a batch record, deviation list, complaint list, facility layout, CAPA list, compliance documents, change controls and other master files.
  • Scanning and saving: Scan these documents ahead of time and upload them to an online company drive that is easily accessed by the inspection team.
  • Getting the right equipment: Whether you plan to use a smartphone or Wi-Fi camera, make sure the user knows how to operate it correctly and it works in every nook and cranny of your facility.
  • Running simulated inspections: A walkthrough lets you test video and audio quality. You can also identify and address poor Wi-Fi connectivity.

 

Virtual and hybrid inspections are a new format, and there can be challenges on both sides. Make sure your plan has some flexibility. Also, keep an eye on the FDA’s website for any announcements on virtual inspections. If the FDA does decide to start conducting virtual inspections it is likely that they will also roll out internal processes and procedures to ensure a harmonized approach. These items could be a Staff Manual Guide or a new chapter in their Investigations Operations Manual (Investigations Operations Manual | FDA).

 

About RCA

 

pharmaceutical consultantRegulatory Compliance Associates (RCA)® has helped thousands of pharmaceutical companies meet regulatory, compliance, quality assurance, and remediation challenges. With more than 20 years of experience with FDA, Health Canada, EU and global regulatory agencies worldwide, RCA offers leading pharmaceutical consultants that can help you navigate through the challenges associated with evolving industry regulations.

Our team of over 500 seasoned FDA, Health Canada and EU compliance consultants and regulatory affairs experts can understand the complexities surrounding the pharmaceutical industry and the unique inner workings of the regulatory process. 

 

Client Solutions

Whether you’re in the product planning, development or pharmaceutical lifecycle management stage or need a remediation strategy for a compliance crisis, RCA® Inc. will guide you through every step of the regulatory process and create a customized approach depending on your product and your pharma company’s individual needs. Our clients include:

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Regulatory Affairs

Regulatory affairs is Regulatory Compliance Associates® Inc.’s backbone and we fully understand the complexities of the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical industries. Our expertise spans all facets and levels of Regulatory Affairs, from Regulatory Support for New Products to Life Cycle Management, to other services like Outsourced Regulatory Affairs, Submissions, Training, and more.

As your partner, we can negotiate the potential assessment minefield of pharmaceuticals with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our breadth and depth of knowledge and experience. We offer the following four regulatory affairs services for pharmaceutical companies.

  • New Product Support
  • Product Lifecycle
  • Other Regulatory Services

 

Compliance Assurance

The regulations process surrounding pharmaceutical companies can be tricky for even the most experienced industry veteran to understand, and just one misstep could mean significant and lasting consequences for your business. At RCA® Inc., we offer the experience and resources necessary to guide you in quality compliance.

  • Assessments
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Quality Assurance

Regulatory Compliance Associates® Inc.’s Quality Assurance services include assessments, strategy, implementations, staff augmentations, and identification of quality metrics to ensure continuous improvement, aligning with your business needs and goals. Our consultants are quality experts with experience spanning major corporations and start-ups. We know firsthand how to achieve, maintain, and improve quality, and we excel in transferring this knowledge to your organization.

  • 21 CFR Part 11
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Remediation 

Regulatory Compliance Associates® Inc. has significant experience and a proven approach to managing FDA Warning Letters, Consent Decrees, Remediation and other serious regulatory situations. We know how to partner with executive, legal, and communication teams, and will assist management with a response that will be accepted by the regulatory agency and be realistic to execute. We can develop a comprehensive proof book of documented objective evidence demonstrating the corrective actions taken to remediate non-compliant issues. In addition, RCA can help prepare a comprehensive strategy to assist in your remediation efforts, drive continuous improvement, and maintain compliance with the regulations.

  • Regulatory Action
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About RCA

pharmaceutical consultantsRegulatory Compliance Associates® (RCA) provides healthcare consulting services to the following industries for resolution of compliance and regulatory challenges:

We understand the complexities of running a life science business and possess areas of expertise that include every facet of R&D, operations, regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing. We are used to working on the front lines and thriving in the scrutiny of FDA and globally-regulated companies.

As your partners, we can negotiate the potential minefield of regulatory compliance and regulatory due diligence with insight, hindsight, and the clear advantage of our unique expertise and experience.

  • Founded in 2000
  • Headquartered in Wisconsin (USA)
  • Expertise backed by over 500 industry subject matter experts
  • Acquired by Sotera Health in 2021

 

To begin the Regulatory Compliance Associates® scoping process today, please enter your information in the blue form below and click the submit button at the bottom of the webpage. 

 

 

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