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Pharmaceutical Manufacturing and Packing Sourcer

The Trouble with Blister Packing for Clinical Trials

The Challenge

The foremost challenge for pharmaceutical companies is to minimise the time spent on a clinical trial. In so doing, patients benefit faster and drug companies get their product to market more quickly, thereby earning profits as early as possible to recoup their development costs. The problems associated with clinical trials include:

Lack of control over packaging
Clinical trials departments have no control over the advancement of their development programmes because they face long delays whilst waiting for suitable scheduling time on a production line.

Blister quality
R&D teams carrying out clinical trials, stability or packaging tests need to produce blister packs of the same high quality as those produced on large packaging lines for which consumer consumption is high.

Production departments do not like small batches
It is not cost-effective for production departments to run small R&D batches on high-speed lines. Small batches are an inconvenience to the production department because they require the same amount of time and incur the same costs as those involved in setting up large batches. Often R&D simply have to get in line until a suitable gap in production scheduling can be found.


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By Ernest Parker, Founder of SEPHA Ltd

Ernest Parker BSc, MRPharmS, MPSNI, is the Founder of SEPHA Ltd, the only company in Ireland which designs, develops and manufactures blister packing and deblistering equipment. Ernest is also a QP and is well qualified to discuss the finer points of blister packing for clinical trials.

Ernest has been the pioneering force behind the development of a wide range of solutions for the pharmaceutical industry including deblistering equipment for product recovery from blister packs, lab-scale blister packing machines and, most recently, a revolutionary new non-destructive leak tester for blister packs.

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Ernest Parker
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