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28 Feb 2020 Article

Reduce labelling and packaging waste

Since 1997, CSM’s revolutionary customer-centric approach has been providing innovative solutions to meet the complex clinical supply challenges that pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies face. CSM, a Clinigen company, manages the clinical supply chain for hundreds of satisfied clients worldwide, providing services that keep clinical trials on time and on budget regardless of their size and scope.

Study changes and time constraints are some of the many factors that can affect the packaging and labelling of products, putting a clinical trial at risk. Preparing clinical supplies on an as-needed basis, like with CSM’s on-demand services, can avoid drug waste and associated costs.

The effective management of drug supply can be the difference between the success and failure of a clinical trial. Focusing on actual enrolment – packaging and labelling clinical supplies specifically for, and immediately prior to, each shipment request – accommodates change without compromising the trial timeline.

But why choose an innovative on-demand service instead of the tried and tested traditional packaging and labelling model?

Flexible and highly customisable

All or a forecasted allotment of clinical supplies are packaged and labelled prior to the receipt of a shipment request when using the traditional model. When packaging and labelling as needed, only the requested quantity is prepared after the shipment request has been received. Not only is the traditional method more time-consuming and creates waste, it constantly requires reworking due to midstudy changes and expiration date updates.

While traditional clinical supply management methods may be appropriate for some trials, the flexibility offered by preparing the clinical supplies as needed helps make most trials more efficient and more cost-effective.

There is no need to forecast how much to package and label, or schedule production weeks in advance, when supplies are prepared based on enrolment. Clinical study changes can be incorporated in days.

Greatly lowers costs

More than 25% of all clinical supplies that are packaged and labelled are never used, even with expense forecasting, scheduling campaigns and implementing lean from the beginning. For most companies, it is closer to 50%.

The flexibility offered by packaging and labelling on an as-needed basis eliminates this waste, significantly reducing trial costs. It can save more than what is spent to package the entire clinical trial. With mid-study changes easily accommodated, duplicate work is eliminated, also resulting in cost (and time) savings.

Clinical trials with expensive and limited supply medicines, in particular, can greatly benefit from packaging and labelling on-demand as a smaller quantity is needed. It also provides flexibility in product use.

Less bulk drug required

Preparing the clinical trial supplies based on enrolment helps meet the challenges and limitations associated with the traditional model, which can have a negative impact on the study momentum and budget.

While bulk drugs must be in the inventory before the clinical trial starts, much less is required with on-demand than with traditional methods. Bulk drugs could also be continually received in small allotments without affecting the on-demand process.

Supplies are shipped quickly

One of the many benefits of packaging and labelling products as needed is that the clinical trial supplies can be prepared and shipped in a matter of days. With traditional methods, it normally takes six to eight weeks to get supplies packaged, labelled, released and ready for shipment.

CSM recognises the urgency of time in regard to clinical trial processes. At CSM, on-demand requests will be processed and shipped 48–72 hours every time. It also significantly reduces storage and inventory, and makes adaptive trials easier to manage.

CSM’s innovative on-demand solution can shorten timelines, reduce waste, which in turn reduces costs, and ultimately increase the flexibility of a clinical study. 

For further information

How can we help make your trials more efficient and cost-effective ? 
Speak to a CSM expert to discover our tailor-made solutions.