Interview with Indegene: Challenges and future of pharmacovigilance (PV) Compliance

By Liza Laws

- Last updated on GMT

Interview with Indegene: Challenges and future of PV Compliance

Related tags Indegene Artificial intelligence Clinical trials Drug discovery Pharmacovigilance

OSP spoke to Vladamir Penkrat, head of safety and regulatory and Shuba Rao a senior director at Indegene, a life sciences digital company about a paper they recently published called 'Challenges and Future of PV Compliance' about the direction compliance is headed and how they would convert risk-based approaches into a confidence-based assurances.

OSP: Can you elaborate on the challenges faced in PV compliance?

Penkrat​: One of the main challenges is the increasing volumes, and sources of adverse events (AE) reported data. This has resulted in the need for diversified systems to capture and store this data and then follow through to ensure proper data handling on time. At the same time, the current landscape has evolved into a globalized and highly decentralized environment.

Rao:​ Another challenge is the need for a robust and efficient PV system to capture and report adverse events promptly and accurately. We need adequately trained resources and effective processes in place.

OSP: ​How do regulatory bodies monitor PV compliance, and what are the consequences of non-compliance?

Rao:​ Regulatory bodies monitor compliance through review of data submitted by the MAHs and conducting regular audits/inspections. They provide guidelines, training, and FAQs on their website to help Market Authorization Holders (MAHs) understand the regulatory requirements. Consequences of non-compliance can range from warning letters and levying fines to suspension or revocation of marketing authorizations and taking legal action.

Penkrat:​ It is important to note that non-compliance not only poses risks to public health but also has financial implications for MAHs. The maintenance of adverse event reporting and periodic reporting with signal evaluation and corresponding label evaluation all provide evidence of the diligence. MAHs use this evidence to maintain current and compliant data on AEs. Non-compliance to this diligence can delay future product development and approvals and cause revenue loss and reputation damage.

OSP: ​How can companies ensure PV compliance?

Penkrat:​ Companies must establish an efficient PV system with adequate resources, trained staff, and robust processes and procedures. It includes clearly understanding regulatory requirements and guidelines and ensuring that all stakeholders involved in drug development, manufacturing, and distribution adhere to these requirements.

Dr. Shubha Rao:​ Companies should also implement effective data management and integration strategies to ensure timely and efficient access to PV data. It involves establishing transparent processes for data collection, analysis, and reporting and ensuring that data is stored and shared securely and in compliance with data protection regulations.

OSP: ​What is the future of PV compliance?

Rao​: Many organizations use generic tools to track compliance, such as emails, excel spreadsheets, SharePoint, or in-house tracking systems. These tools are not efficient or scalable and may lack a single source of truth for compliance information. Therefore, automation is a vital element that can help businesses to achieve five key goals:

  1. Making entire safety processes leaner
  2. Managing volume fluctuations
  3. Enabling suitable prioritization based on regulatory timelines
  4. Eliminating redundant steps in current process
  5. Increasing team's efficiency

Penkrat:​ We expect the focus to increase on using new technologies such as machine learning. It can improve the detection and assessment of safety concerns and risks as a mechanism to draw attention to potential issues with patient data. Ultimately, we can shorten the time to reporting and reduce the potential for missed AEs.

OSP: ​What steps can companies take to stay ahead of the curve?

Penkrat:​ Manpower alone cannot manage the increasing data volume and intricacies. This is where technology solutions will become mission-critical. Expect that more than 80% of the top 100 pharma companies will commence a re-examination of their safety platforms and supporting technologies in the upcoming years. Pharmaceutical organizations should perform the following activities - audit organization's current practice for compliance, advocate for investments in custom software solutions and create better alignment between label database and PV database

How can MAHs ensure compliance with P.V. regulatory obligations?

Dr. Shubha Rao:​ MAHs can ensure compliance with P.V. regulatory obligations by implementing robust PV systems, regularly monitoring the safety profile of their products, and reporting adverse events and safety concerns in a timely manner. They should also have processes to address and respond to requests for information from health authorities and address any issues raised in health authority assessment reports. It is also essential for MAHs to ensure that their business partners and service providers comply with PV regulations and submission timelines.

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