IDC is bullish on drug serialization. The market researcher says in a report that it expects about 50 percent of the industry to have fully serialized at least one product line to the item level by the end of 2011.
The driver will be big pharma companies preparing for the 2015 deadline of the California Board of Pharmacy serialization mandate and similar upcoming regulations worldwide, says Pharmaceutical Commerce. A U.S. national serialization and pedigree program remains an FDA discussion item. The agency held a public workshop on system attributes for drug track and trace in mid-February. The effort is in line with similar activities in Europe, reports the Association for Automatic Identification and Mobility (AIM).
Many companies are encoding data matrix symbology on preprinted labels, says AIM. And several are embedding RFID tags in labels and encoding them on-the-fly. Mechanics aside, however, housing, managing and securing these data remain challenges. And some non-manufacturing parts of the drug supply chain, including retailers, maintain resistant.