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TraceLink Enables US Wholesale Distributors to Cut First-Year DSCSA Costs by More than 70%

June 23, 2015

TraceLink Inc., the world’s largest track and trace network for connecting the Life Sciences supply chain and eliminating counterfeit prescription drugs from the global marketplace, today announced that US wholesale distributors currently managing a mix of paper and electronic compliance documents under the U.S. Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) can reduce their compliance infrastructure and labor costs by more than 70% in the first year as a TraceLink customer. For the typical mid-market wholesale distributor with approximately 40 upstream suppliers and 200 downstream customers, the cost savings is achievable by establishing a single connection to the TraceLink Life Sciences Cloud, which then provides an immediate data connection to any of the wholesaler’s trading partners who are among the more than 400 pharmaceutical suppliers already integrated into the TraceLink network. To see which of their trading partners are already connected to the Life Sciences Cloud, wholesale distributors can use a new interactive, online tool—the  TraceLink Integrated Supplier Directory.

“US wholesale distributors trying to achieve DSCSA compliance on their own or with a competitive offering having been struggling to implement HDMA ASN EDI connections to their suppliers. In most cases, they have only been able to connect with a small handful of their partners,” said Shabbir Dahod, president and CEO of TraceLink. “The cost of the systems and staff required to establish a direct data connection with every individual supplier is significant. Where integrations don’t exist, distributors have to manage product shipments that will generate tens of thousands of paper compliance transactions in a given year, and this can quickly drive additional time and labor costs into the millions. The Life Sciences Cloud instantly connects any wholesale distributor to more than 400 integrated pharmaceutical suppliers and completely eliminates the need for internal staff to manage individual EDI connections and paper transactions. Just one connection to TraceLink can reduce the operational cost of DSCSA compliance by more than 70% in the first year—and by 90% over the first three years.” 

US Wholesale Distributors: The Road to Cost Effective DSCSA Compliance 

US wholesale distributors that purchase prescription medications from manufacturers and resell them to other distributors or dispensers have a complex network of upstream and downstream pharmaceutical suppliers. In order to efficiently and securely manage the complex data transactions that are required by DSCSA, distributors are faced with implementing some form of integrated electronic connection to all of their suppliers, and electronically enabling their downstream trade partner network, to avoid the difficult task of handing of tens of thousands of paper compliance documents for products moving in and out of inventory. The time and cost required to implement connections based on the HDMA ASN guideline can vary significantly from supplier to supplier given the particular adjustments that individual suppliers often make to the ASNs, which now include DSCSA compliance information. 

In working with hundreds of US wholesale distributors over the past 18 months, TraceLink has observed that those who have attempted to achieve DSCSA compliance on their own—or with a competitive offering that requires a single data integration to every supplier—have only been able to establish working EDI connections with a few of their partners. In the majority of situations where data connections aren’t available, wholesale distributors must currently receive, manage, store and amend (where necessary) paper DSCSA compliance documents. The ongoing expense and labor involved with implementing and maintaining new EDI connections, while at the same time, managing paper record keeping for DSCSA documents, is placing a significant financial and operational burden on wholesale distributors. 

Unlocking Cost Savings with the TraceLink Integrated Supplier Directory

The TraceLink Integrated Supplier Directory is an interactive search-based tool that provides wholesale distributors with the opportunity to discover how many of their current trading partners are currently using TraceLink for DSCSA compliance and secure data exchange. In just a few minutes, any wholesale distributor can easily:

  • Search for their trading partners from a list of more than 400 integrated pharmaceutical suppliers on the TraceLink Life Sciences Cloud—the largest group of integrated trading partners that exist on any single network platform;
  • Create a customized list of their upstream and downstream partners—that have already established an integrated connection with TraceLink, and also identified the querying wholesale distributor as one of their trading partners; and,
  • Conduct a data integration cost-benefit analysis—by weighing the cost of creating individual EDI connections to each identified supplier against establishing just one connection to TraceLink, which automatically links them to any of their TraceLink-enabled partners for secure data exchange. 

With this information, any wholesale distributor can then connect with a TraceLink solutions expert who can perform a more detailed and tailored cost-benefit analysis for their wholesale distribution operation. 

Wholesale distributors that are interested in seeing which of their pharmaceutical suppliers or trading partners are currently using the Life Sciences Cloud for DSCSA compliance can visit the TraceLink Integrated Supplier Directory.

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