A Zebra machine vision system on a pharmaceutical manufacturer's pill bottle fill line
By William Corns | July 20, 2022

Industrial Automation Insider: How Pharmaceutical Companies are Pairing Machine Vision with RFID, Temperature Sensors and More for Track and Trace and Compliance

Two global pharma technology experts share some of the unique ways they’ve been working with Zebra customers and partners to address the top challenges faced throughout the supply chain today.

John Wirthlin and Daniel Dombach know the pharmaceutical industry well. They also know technology and how to apply it pragmatically across time- and temperature-sensitive operations, such as the pharmaceutical supply chain.

Both are spearheading initiatives with pharma manufacturers, wholesalers, and distributors to help fix the current inventory management, track and trace, and compliance issues disrupting supply chains and eroding trust among clinicians, patients, partners and industry regulators. They’re also plugged in with industry research bodies such as the Axia Institute for proof-of-concept projects intended to validate proposed solutions.

Over the past couple of years, John and Daniel have provided clear-cut evidence that fixed industrial scanning, machine vision, RFID and other sensing platforms can solve the business problems that traditional barcode systems can’t on their own. They’re also demonstrating that such solutions aren’t as complex to deploy and manage as they once were.

So, if you’re responsible for producing, distributing, storing, dispensing, or administering pharmaceuticals – or any cold chain or highly regulated good – I encourage you to listen into this conversation on your lunch or coffee break:

Industrial Automation Insider Episode #4: How Pharma Companies are Pairing Machine Vision with RFID, Temperature Sensors and More for Track and Trace

We discuss:

  • [3:10] The challenges faced by pharmaceutical companies today and how they compare to challenges faced by those in other consumable supply chains or cold chains.
  • [6:07] How regulations help pharmaceutical entities overcome some of the issues they’ve struggled with in the past from more of an operational perspective.
  • [10:33] The technologies that pharma entities are using to keep up with demands and regulations, and the things the industry could do better to manage pressures from external sources.
  • [11:45] Why this will be “the year of RFID” in pharma and how other technologies will start to make their mark in a more noticeable way.
  • [14:45] The three things that pharma supply chain leaders are most worried about right now in Europe and North America based on recent conversations John and Daniel have had with manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors. (Hint: Control, efficiency and the need to digitally transform underscore every concern.)
  • [18:28] How temperature sensors factor into automation solutions throughout the supply chain.
  • [23:30] The technologies – whether hardware or software – they feel must underpin supply chain workflows and processes moving forward.

Listen now then check out these other related insights:

Best Practices, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Warehouse and Distribution, Automation, Innovative Ideas, Transportation and Logistics, Podcast, Public Sector,

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