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How to reduce the risks of comparator sourcing

Updated: Jan 26

Read our tips to help you reduce the risk associated with comparator sourcing

Like all supply chains, comparator sourcing poses substantial risks, such as sourcing comparator drugs, obtaining the correct documentation, supply chain delays and compliance with local and global regulations.

With our science-based approach and over 25 years of experience in comparator sourcing, we have a detailed understanding of the risks it brings. Here are three ways you can reduce the risks to ensure your comparator sourcing strategy is a success, whilst keeping your clinical trial on schedule.

Build a global network

Clinical trials can span across countries and continents, meaning comparator drugs will travel thousands of miles. Throughout the logistical process, the comparators need to be labelled, packaged and sent through customs for each country.

All this can quickly lead to delays and incorrect quantities of the products being delivered if you don’t have a trusted network across the world.

Our reliable global network developed over 25 years means that the comparators we send to clinical trials can ultimately arrive at the correct destination and on time so the study can remain on schedule. If any challenges arise, our close relationship with our global suppliers help us solve them.

Leverage good supplier relationships

Having a global network is one thing, but it’s important to leverage this network and establish good relationships with suppliers. Suppliers must have a good reputation and come with years of experience in clinical trial supply chains.

The focal benefit of having good supplier relationships is it increases the likelihood of overcoming supply chain issues and delivering the comparators on time and on-budget - but there are other factors to consider too.

Significant risks to comparator sourcing comes in the form of regulatory adherence. Failing to adhere to the regulations will soon result in lengthy delivery delays and can equally result in the products not being delivered at all – putting the clinical trial at risk.

Each country will have varying levels of import and export regulations - and with it, different numbers of documents to fill. Working with suppliers who have an in-depth knowledge of the regulations will help ensure that you remain compliant, resulting in the comparators being delivered on schedule.

At CSI, we have built outstanding relationships with our suppliers, which means that we have never failed to deliver medicines for a clinical trial.

Forecast risks

Issues with the supply chain, such as stock issues and product delays can greatly hamper clinical trials. However, forecasting and planning for these issues can help overcome them and keep the clinical trial on schedule.

Direct to site distribution can help deliver comparator drugs quickly and reliably to clinical trials, saving you time and money. However, the main factor to consider is to analyse every possible opportunity for challenges emerging.

We analyse every stage of the clinical trial supply chain by implementing a 6-step risk manage process:

  • Identify

  • Evaluate

  • Control

  • Communicate

  • Review

  • Report

The result of this process is that our comparator sourcing strategies are always fit for purpose and works to minimise risks with the clinical trial supply chain.

Choose the right comparator sourcing partner

Overcoming the risks with comparator sourcing is a complex process. So, having the right partner is essential. Working with CSI can optimise your comparator sourcing strategy and ensure high quality comparators are sourced on budget and on time.

While our headquarters are in London, we operate in the UK, Germany, Japan and the USA. Using our science-based approach, we leverage our global network and country-specific expertise to source comparator drugs from audited suppliers, originators and dedicated wholesalers in Europe, the USA, Latin America and the Asia Pacific (APAC) while maintaining regulatory compliance.

Contact us to discuss how we source comparators globally to ensure the successful supply of your clinical trials.


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