30Sep/19
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Quality Can Only Improve… IF We Allow the Information to Focus on Providing Quality Products

MasterControl Briefing Note

By: Sandra K. Rodriguez, Market Analyst

Axendia was recently briefed by the Executive Team at MasterControl.   The company’s mission is to make life changing products available to more people sooner.   One way MasterControl is setting out to achieve its mission, is by enabling its Life-Science customers to obtain what it calls Product Lifecycle Excellence (PLx).  With over 650,000 users spanning more than fifty countries, MasterControl is well positioned to bring a much needed correlation between Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) and Quality Management to the Life-Science industry.

The Need to Connect Decision Loops

Companies typically have quality data spread all over the organization.   Paper-driven production processes on the shop floor are also still a reality in many companies.  These pockets of quality data, when consolidated, have the potential to offer valuable insights to product quality data across the entire lifecycle.  With PLx, MasterControl is seeking to close the gap in the digitalization of the manufacturing environment.   “We looked at how to build an application that is easy for operators to adopt and use, easy for manufacturing environments to deploy and connect to their other systems.  And, in the process, completely eliminate paper off of the shop floor,” said Matt Lowe, Executive Vice President at MasterControl.

Another reality is that although advances in PLM and Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) have been rolled out over decades, QMS data is often siloed and paper still exists on the shop floor.  The result is a disconnect in information that may range from clinical study quality issues to poor shop floor data integrity.  Additionally, complaint data is often times not looped back into the organizations’ overall quality system.   “Being able to launch quality incidents from the shop floor, enforce training and fill the gap between ERP, MES and LIMS allows companies to achieve next level digital manufacturing excellence and that’s what we’re pursuing,” said Terrance Holbrook, Director of Product Management. Continue reading

24Sep/19
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What to Expect in FDA’s Draft Guidance on Computer Software Assurance

Recap of the Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP) – Puerto Rico Chapter Meeting

On August 22, 2019, I was invited by the IoPP – Puerto Rico Chapter to present key takeaways from FDA’s anticipated Draft Guidance on Computer Software Assurance for Manufacturing, Operations and Quality System Software.  Thirty-two attendees from fifteen companies attended the quarterly meeting at the C3Tec campus in Caguas, Puerto Rico.

Sandra IoPP PR 2Background:  Unfortunately, when the Medical Devices Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) Final Rule, Quality System Regulation, became effective on June 1, 1997, they had an “unintended consequence”:  Validating Computer Systems to death!

According to FDA’s Francisco (Cisco) Vicenty, Program Manager, Case for Quality, FDA CDRH, the Life-Science industry’s high focus on meeting regulatory requirements versus adopting best quality practices has the potential to increase risks to patients.  This compliance-centric approach has resulted in quality issues and has hampered innovation in manufacturing and product development practices.  Additionally, this single-mindedness has led to low rates of investment in automation and digital technologies.

To streamline and improve non-product computer system validation, industry launched a shared effort with FDA to identify causes of misperceptions, to clarify, and to promote the best practices.

Their analysis of the issue shows that:

  • The industry lags in implementation of automated systems and new technologies due to lack of clarity, outdated compliance approaches, and perceived regulatory burden.
  • Some companies struggle to understand the root cause of issues in order to improve product quality.

Their vision to achieve a new mind-set:

  • Drive a paradigm shift in applying value-driven and patient-focused approaches to streamline non-product software CSV.
  • Use critical thinking and risk-based, agile approaches to streamline assurance activities and evidence capture.

Their plan to meet their objectives:

  • Develop streamlined practice recommendations and pilots.
  • Modifications to the 820.70(i) and 820.50 regulatory language.
  • Guidance development centered on this software category.

Roque Redondo, VP Business Development at Mirus offered his perspective during the Q&A session by commenting, “It’s very important to understand if companies that provide software to our industry can demonstrate that they really have strong QA Systems in such a way that we can all rely on their software development programs.  I strongly recommend doing a survey of these companies to find out if they will be completely open to QA Audits from their clients to fully demonstrate that their QA Systems are in place and trustful.  In addition, it will be good to investigate if the excessive amount of CSV efforts done in the industry are due to the current guidelines or to the interpretation of the guidelines.”

It was a pleasure to share this information locally to my industry peers.

To hear the FDA’s perspective on the New Approach to Computer Software Assurance in our Straight from the Source webinar series, access it on-demand.

05Sep/19
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Partnering with Customers to Make Digital Quality a Reality

Sparta Connection 2019 Event Brief

By: Daniel R. Matlis, President

The theme at this year’s Sparta Connection was: “Making Digital Quality a Reality.” Under the leadership of Dana Jones, CEO of Sparta Systems, the company continues to focus on customer success by delivering on commitments, ensuring transparency, and building relationships to earn customer trust.

“We’re 100% committed to putting customers at the center of everything we do, and to partnering with them to accelerate their transformation to digital quality,” said Ms. Jones. “We’re also committed to giving our customers maximum freedom, flexibility and choice by providing a range of options with our cloud, on-premise and hybrid options.”

Sparta Blog Image

To support its commitment to provide flexibility, freedom and choice to deliver quality based on customer needs, Sparta is investing across 3 dimensions:

  • TrackWise® QMS – Sparta announced their continued commitment to the TrackWise on-premise product for existing customers. They also announced that the next version of the product, TrackWise 10, will be coming out in 2020.
  • TrackWise hybrid solution – TrackWise customers can expand the functionality of their existing on-premise instances by seamlessly adding TrackWise Digital cloud modules to TrackWise. This includes cloud modules such as Complaints, Intake and Supplier Quality Management.
  • TrackWise DigitalSM – over 120 customer have selected TrackWise Digital

Continue reading

05Sep/19
Can Digital Evidence Replace Clinical Evidence-Small (1)

Can Digital Evidence Replace Clinical Evidence?

A Straight from the Source Webinar Available On-Demand

FDA is encouraging the use of “Digital Evidence” to inform clinical trial design, predict clinical outcomes, support demonstration of safety and effectiveness, identify relevant patient populations, and support regulatory submissions. 

Digital evidence from in silico clinical trials have been shown to produce similar results as human clinical trials and under certain circumstances may replace clinical evidence. 

Join FDA’s Tina M. Morrison and Axendia’s Daniel R. Matlis for a live webinar on 18 SEP 2019 at 11:00 AM ET. 

We will discuss FDA’s perspective on: 

  • Shifting from traditional evidence sources to digital evidence  
  • How to create virtual patients with digital evidence to replace clinical evidence  
  • Examples of digital evidence in Pharma and Medical Devices used at FDA to initiate and augment clinical studies 
  • Creating an in silico clinical trial playbook
  • Why data in PDF’s are not sufficient 

Meet Your Trusted Sources

Tina and Dan for CC

Register to view this webinar on-demand.

register

14Aug/19
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eBook: AI Drives Shift from Reactive to Predictive Quality

Regulatory Consideration for AI-Enabled QMS

Life Science companies must adopt Predictive Quality.  This eBook, sponsored by Sparta Systems, discusses how industry should leverage FDA’s Good Machine Learning Practices (GMLP) to implement AI in order to drive improved productivity and intelligent decision-making while meeting regulatory requirements.

AI EBOOK IMAGE 2“The ability of artificial intelligence and machine learning software to learn from real-world feedback and improve its performance is spurring innovation and leading to the development of novel medical devices,” said Dr. Scott Gottlieb, MD, 23rd Commissioner, US FDA.

The use of AI and ML can enable Life Science organizations to harness data and turn it into intelligent and actionable insights that enable predictive quality. AI systems can process data from point solutions to glean intelligence and  support decision-making.

In this eBook we also discuss:

  • Why you cannot validate AI with outdated CSV models
  • How AI is enabling the shift to predictive quality management
  • Implications for the Life Sciences industry

Register to receive your complimentary copy.