Joanne Hockaday, commercial manager at Martel Instruments, provides an insight into the critical importance of data integrity in labs.
Data integrity is critical to the success of any laboratory and the research it conducts, this includes the effective management of laboratory information and the efficient exchange of data between equipment and laboratory information systems.
Whilst data integrity is vital, we have discovered through our close working relationships with lab managers that human error through manual recordings remains an issue.
Data collection in labs is typically a manual process. The lab managers we work with often describe how this leaves data management open to security risks and human error. This is a challenge throughout labs globally and the implications of inaccurate recordings are costly in the form of large unexpected fines.
The medical and scientific sectors are very heavily regulated, if data is recorded incorrectly or entries are duplicated this can have a direct impact on the end products being created. If medical dosage specifications, or the measurement of ingredients that make up a product are not exact, labs are penalised.
Data integrity is also critical in research and medical testing, and despite quality control, lab errors do happen. Minimising these errors not only improves the integrity of the data, it is imperative for other teams to be able to replicate experimental procedures.
Labs invest heavily in LIMS (Laboratory Information Management Systems) and ELN (Electronic Lab Notebooks) systems which are a large financial outlay for any lab. Purchasing a quality information management system is becoming more of a standard practice and is a part of an overall needed update in data management. However, if the data that is input into these systems is inaccurate, then these systems are only as valuable as that data.
To maximise on the investment into LIMS and ELN systems, labs should utilise an accurate and secure system which preserves the integrity of data from all recordings, measurements and research. Lab research happens in real time and until now, there has been no one way that data can be electronically recorded, securely stored, and seamlessly transferred to a data management system using one device.
VIDA data collection technology
VIDA is a revolutionary data technology, which we conceptualised harnessing nearly 40 years of experience in solving data management and presentation problems for scientific and medical instrument manufacturers and users, globally.
Electronic and paperless, VIDA eliminates the risks that can be associated with manual data collection in labs. It transmits data automatically from lab equipment and has the capacity to store 50 million sample records with its 8GB of memory that can be expanded as much as required. VIDA also connects to scientific research equipment and devices, storing and transferring metadata instantly and securely to any centralised information management system (LIMS or ELN).
VIDA was developed in close consultation with lab managers worldwide and through focus groups we gained an intricate understanding of the data collection challenges that labs experience every day and created this direct solution to help lab managers, technicians and teams generate a seamless flow of data throughout their labs.
We also understand the critical importance of equipment adhering to quality standards and in early 2020 VIDA achieved compliance with Title 21CFR Part 11 - established by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This regulation defines the criteria under which Electronic Records and Electronic Signatures are considered trustworthy, reliable, and equivalent to paper records. A necessary regulation for our expansion into the US market, this provides added reassurance to lab managers that VIDA removes the risk of data errors and the penalties associated with non-compliance.
VIDA’s benefits also include:
VIDA has recorded 100% accuracy in all of its lab trials to date. Following a successful trial, Dr. Garry M Weeks of Teesside University, said: “VIDA is a welcome addition to any laboratory – helping to streamline and manage activity, plus massively reducing manual data processing.”
Confident in its capabilities, we are offering 30-day trials of VIDA so labs can discover first-hand not only VIDA’s secure data transfer capabilities, but also its direct impact on the improvement of workflow and productivity. Trials are easy to set up and we welcome enquiries.
Contact us to find out more about VIDA and its many benefits: +44 (0)1207 290 266.