IDMP is a life sciences hot topic - Frits Stulp, Managing Director at Iperion Life Sciences Consultancy explores how organizations can use data smarter and more effectively
Identification of Medicinal Products (IDMP) has been a topic of heavy discussion in the industry since the release of the standards by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in 2012.
I’m speaking about IDMP and automation at the upcoming AMPLEXOR BE THE EXPERT 2018 conference, and I would wager that the letters I.D.M.P will be among the most used and talked about at the whole event.
There’s a reason that IDMP is discussed so much – it is hugely important and genuinely has the potential to transform the way that life sciences firms make decisions about all manner of elements of their business, when used in conjunction with improved automation.
IDMP and changing ways of thinking about data
I should be clear from the outset – I am a believer in, and advocate of IDMP. The standardization definitions for the identification and description of medical products is a necessary step towards the future. Exchanging this standardized information will facilitate interoperability across global regulatory and healthcare communities.
But that’s not to say that I don’t understand some of the stresses that the industry has about IDMP. Some organizations are well on the road to becoming IDMP-ready, while others are yet to even start. But what IDMP has done, is to begin to encourage a new way of thinking as to how organizations think about data in documents.
Companies have been looking at what information is required at the level of the product - what is readily available, is it stored in an exchangeable format, is it under governance? There’s an awareness now, that to get best value from data it needs to be under control – stored in the right system, exchangeable, properly governed and controlled.
The rise of automation
Automation used to be mainly about standardising ways of working in such ways that manual processes could be replaced by machines, resulting in significant efficiency gains. This is still important, but automation has matured to a stage where informed decision making based on high quality data now lies within reach.
Informed CIOs will always be aware of the new trends and technologies and be prepared to consider the most interesting and valuable ways of deploying them. Life sciences is a knowledge and information dense industry, which really invites the use of such automated solutions.
IDMP can be a stepping stone to really utilise such automation, allowing product information with the underlying definitions it needs, to be maintained as related master data. When master data is set up correctly – traceable, unique, with hierarchies and relationships – and organizations are creating a breeding ground and foundation for more use of automation in that area.
But even such relatively modest improvements have taken two years of discussion. It’s a slow-moving process with many stakeholders involved, and the default position for many life sciences firms is to take the least risky option.
There is of course risk involved with any change, but with IDMP and automation, the benefits are there for all to see.
I’m looking forward to presenting at BE THE EXPERT 2018, where I’ll elaborate on how automation can help future-proof the industry, and offer some practical tips on ways organizations can get started with their own automation journey.
To attend AMPLEXOR's BE THE EXPERT conference and training click the link below.
Frits Stulp is the Managing Director of Iperion Life Sciences Consultancy. He has been the Program Manager of the first completed IDMP implementation program, and also a member of the EMA ISO IDMP Task Force.