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The Role of Quality Assurance in the World of Pharmaceuticals

Tom Evans our consultant managing the role
Posted by Tom Evans
Published on 30 January 2023

High quality standards are the bedrock of the pharmaceutical industry. Heavily regulated to maximise public safety, there are rigorous practices and procedures to follow in the manufacture of drugs.

After all, it’s the mission of the industry to enhance human health. And to do this, pharmaceutical organisations need to make sure that the products that they release are to the highest possible standard. Introducing: quality assurance

What is quality assurance?

Quality assurance in pharmaceuticals is a process that ensures that medical products are safe, manufacturing is optimised, and the product’s quality stays consistent over time. It asks the questions:

    ·         ‘Is this drug or medical product achieving what it has been set out to achieve?’

    ·         ‘Is the consumption of this product safe and free from harm?’

    ·         ‘Are there ways that the procedure can be improved to maximise results?’

    Quality assurance involves an entire team, each member of which will have a responsibility for various quality assurance activities, including documentation, planning and auditing.

Why is quality assurance important in pharmaceuticals?

There are many reasons why a pharmaceutical company would want to produce good quality products. Failure to do so could result in damning reputational, financial and potentially harmful consequences. But quality assurance also enables innovation. It is embracing new automation and AI technologies that will streamline the quality assurance process. Quality assurance is hugely important for pharmaceuticals because it:

Protects public health: The goal of any pharmaceutical manufacturer should be first and foremost to keep its consumers safe. Medication that has been properly manufactured and quality assessed has life changing potential. But if quality assurance principles have not been followed, the drug intended to save someone’s life could do quite the opposite.

Prevents negative publicity: At the core of it all, pharmaceutical manufacturers are businesses. To be successful, they need to capture the trust of the public and ensure their products are being bought. There is a high price to pay for a quality blunder, and the industry has witnessed its share of scandals over the years. Losing public confidence could drastically impact sales, the company’s future and a quality defect could put them in danger of a lawsuit. By following rigorous quality protocols and cGMP regulations, the company should naturally protect itself from negative publicity.

Enables continuous improvements: A by-product of continuously measuring a product throughout the various stages of its manufacture is it allows the company to review and improve on its processes. If a variation or defect occurs, the company can look introspectively at their procedure and narrow down areas for improvement. It is a huge part of quality assurance to ensure that procedures are adapting to the times and striving for improvement.

Find your next quality assurance job with Quanta

Working in quality assurance, your role is almost like a detective; you hunt for areas that require improvement and you solve it. It is one of the reasons the pharmaceutical industry is so successful today, and scientific innovation simply would not be possible without the sharp eye of quality assurance finding ways to continuously evolve.  

So, if you want to support the innovation of this life changing field, get in touch with Quanta. We value quality, and that is why partner with some of the world’s leading pharmaceutical organisations. Check out our quality assurance jobs or get in touch with our expert life sciences recruitment team today.