US Oncology, Inc. (Houston), one of the nation's largest cancer treatment and research networks, has implemented an electronic pedigree data management solution within its oncology drug distribution network to better secure its pharmaceutical supply chain. Every drug distributed through the organization's nationwide network is protected by the track and trace system developed by SupplyScape (Woburn, Mass.), which documents the drug's history in the distribution channel.
"Drug counterfeiting is a growing concern and has affected some of the largest drug suppliers," said Rolando DeCardenas, v.p. of pharmaceutical distribution for US Oncology. "Oncology pharmaceuticals are a prime target because of their high prices and have been the subject of several counterfeit incidences."
The electronic pedigree program tracks the path of each oncology drug through the supply chain, verifies that the pedigree information has not been altered, and provides automatic self-authentication through encryption using industry standard technologies. Affiliated physicians and cancer care sites can find pedigree information for any drug purchased from US Oncology by logging into the Web-based order system.
In addition to implementing the electronic pedigree system, US Oncology is one of the first pharmaceutical distributors in the country to earn the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy's Verified- Accredited Wholesale Distributors (VAWD) accreditation. The VAWD program certifies that a wholesale distributor is operating in compliance with state laws and regulations by evaluating licensure status and conducting disciplinary screening, criminal and financial background checks, review of policies and procedures, and on-site inspections of facilities.
US Oncology supports one of the nation's largest cancer treatment and research networks. It launched its pharmaceutical distribution business in 2005. To date, the company has shipped over six million oncology units with electronic pedigrees. According to the company's last quarterly earnings report, US Oncology is affiliated with 1,067 physicians operating in 425 locations, including 91 radiation oncology facilities in 37 states.