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Cardinal updates progress on DSCSA EPCIS implementation

Cardinal Health in collaboration with LSPediA hosted the third Investigator workshop with hundreds of manufacturer attendees. In this workshop, Cardinal Health’s Manager of Pharmaceutical Information Technology Jeff Falardeau outlined the current process of DSCSA implementation at Cardinal Health and the future process leading to 2023. The current operations, including the workshops, is designed to actively assist the manufacturer suppliers for EPCIS onboarding using LSPediA’s Investigator platform. The current operations will then support the future process that all manufacturer suppliers are DSCSA compliant and sending EPCIS data. Supplier EPCIS onboarding must be completed by November 27 of this year as Cardinal Health plans to shift its focus to outbound EPCIS enablement in 2023.  

“Given the ASN onboarding experience and EPCIS is exponentially more complicated then ASN, we request our suppliers to get an early jump on things,” he said. “It is imperative that we get good data.” 

Cardinal Health currently is averaging 243 EPCIS data files per day, 10 percent of its anticipated volume leading to 2023. When Jeff and team process a week’s worth of EPCIS data files, roughly 1400 EPCIS files, using Investigator, 44 percent had EPCIS or DSCSA related errors, and 33 percent were due to missing transaction statements.  

“Without LSPediA’s Investigator, we would have to find the error, paw through it, determine who the sender is and determine the root cause,” said Falardeau. “With 243 daily EPCIS data files and 44 percent error rate, no company can just eyeball the files and dive through it. It’s difficult, time consuming and there is potential for human error.” 

When Cardinal’s 2022 expectation and the FDA’s 2023 requirement come into play, EPCIS errors will have to be corrected within a three-day window, or packages will be held in quarantine or returned to the sender. The potential for supply chain backups exists without efficient and urgent action. 

Onboarding can take a month or longer depending on a few factors such as whether or not a manufacturer has an AS2 resource. Falardeau stressed a sense of urgency in not waiting until the last minute to begin the onboarding process. 

“With our requirements for aggregated serialized data by November of this year, we hope manufacturers share our sense of urgency to get the data flowing to us, even if there are some lingering errors out there,” said Falardeau. “Focus on leveraging Investigator and don’t get so tied up on correcting files at this juncture.” 

Once onboarded, Cardinal Health will sponsor one Investigation notification account for each supplier, which will send to a distribution list of multiple individuals defined by the manufacturer.  

In further assisting its suppliers, Cardinal has made resources available. A company onboarding guide can be found here. For those that use Cardinal as their 3PL, see your client relationship manager to upgrade to version 4.2.  

To learn more about LSPediA’s Investigator – the industry’s leading solution-based software for EPCIS data transfer, click here. 

The Investigator Workshop is held on the third Wednesday of each month, and each workshop requires separate registration. To register for the next workshop on February 16, click here