Life science companies are drowning in a sea of regulations all over the world, which can make compliance overwhelming. Technology is their life vest. Moving compliance to the cloud is the key to keeping their heads above water. A secure cloud-based, end-to-end software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution designed specifically to help life science companies manage physician interactions and ensure compliance is a lifesaver.
The case for this technology begins with the laws and regulations governing the life science industry. Companies have to track internal, state, regional, national, and international rules and laws. Complying to international laws can sometimes be the most challenging.
So Many Laws, So Little Time
For example, the United States’ Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) prevents companies from bribing foreign officials to win favor and more easily conduct business abroad. Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice announced it would crack down on life science organizations committing bribery, which has made compliance all the more imperative.
FCPA, however, is just one of many regulations governing healthcare companies. Now, every business that has connections to Europe is contending with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which covers the privacy of personal data. Companies are spending as much as a $1 million to prepare for the enactment of the law, according to a recent survey by the global law firm Paul Hastings. Many have pointed out that this figure is a drop in the bucket compared to what violations could cost; GDPR fines are expected to be as much as 4 percent of global sales or 20 million euro, whichever is greater.
Even if a company remains intact after such transgressions, it faces major financial damage and reputational risk. In February 2016, one life science company had to shell out $312 million in criminal penalties and $311 million in civil penalties and corporate integrity agreements (CIA) after being found guilty of providing illegal kickbacks.
With Great Responsibility Comes Great Risk
If morality does not sway life science organizations to comply, then the financial consequences should. To avoid a similar fate, life science companies are making compliance a top priority. Besides saving companies from PR crises and hefty fines or potentially worse punishments, compliance also happens to be the right thing to do.
The best way to efficiently and effectively comply with various laws is investing in a compliance system of record that lives in the cloud. The savings are not the only a result of avoiding violations. The intuitive SaaS technology streamlines processes and eliminates the need for clunky homegrown systems that require constant updates.
A Matter of Convenience
Third parties make it their business to update the platform regularly and as more laws are enacted. Executives and their staff, who are clients of these platform providers, simply have to respond to prompts requesting required information. They can track the data as needed. Everyone, who has permission, can view the information. In fact, a bonus to using one of these platforms is the resulting data, which can be analyzed and used to determine best practices and strategies for the future.
In most cases, you can purchase a compliance system of record for less than 1 percent of a settlement. For instance, 1 percent of $25 million is $250,000.
As a result of SaaS compliance technology on the cloud, life science companies no longer need to have an internal IT department to build in-house systems. By reducing overhead, healthcare companies can invest in the job they really want to do: creating life-saving medicine or medical equipment.
Cloud-based compliance solutions can make life science companies more efficient, productive, and transparent, which can help win back the trust of the public. Life science organizations would much rather be discovering and distributing ways to save lives and improve health than concerned with global compliance regulations. As a result, compliance technology boosts the double bottom line in ways big and small.