EDI requirements within the German pharma trade

The Federal Affiliation of Pharma wholesalers (PHARGO) is continually concerned on the European degree, by means of its umbrella group GIRP, in authorized, technical, and different developments in Europe and worldwide. It presents, with its subsidiary DATEG, a platform for harmonizing digital knowledge transmission in cooperation with market companions. The outcomes are outlined requirements throughout the pharma trade. All main gamers on this sector stick to those requirements, that are essential for proper and safe knowledge change.

Why is it essential to know the requirements in Germany?

The rules and requirements regarding electronic document interchange throughout the pharma trade differ in every nation and have their very own specs. In an effort to guarantee error-free doc change and preserve a excessive degree of effectivity, it’s essential to familiarize oneself with and observe the established requirements. In Germany, orders from pharmaceutical wholesalers to pharmaceutical producers are processed utilizing the PHBEST format, which is tailored to the wants and specifics of the trade.

PHBEST is the abbreviation of German “Pharma Bestellung” (EN: pharma order), and is a custom-made message based mostly on EDIFACT D.96.A. It consists of the header, element, and abstract part. The segments of the order comprise, compared to common EDIFACT D.96.A, some completely different info. Inside the PHB phase, the sender and the recipient are recognized by their BGA and BFA quantity (each fields are obligatory). The recipient’s BGA quantity is barely used if the bill recipient is just not equivalent with the sender of the message, and the billing deal with is just not used. The BGA is a seven-digit quantity indicating the wholesale department and may be obtained from PHAGRO in Frankfurt.

One other distinction is value mentioning throughout the PHP phase, which presents the order objects. The article quantity is indicated by the PZN quantity, which is accountable for the identification of medication. Furthermore, the article description is indicated, together with the dosage type of the drugs. One other pharma-specific doc is the UEWAUF “transfer order” (to not be confused with financial institution switch, which is worded in the identical approach in German). That is the change of orders which are processed by the producer’s discipline employees. Different paperwork, resembling dispatch bits of recommendation and invoices, are additionally processed utilizing the EDIFACT format.

EDI is a versatile method for doc change. It’s impartial of the trade sector, as it’s principally suitable with each sort of system throughout the firm. Properly-known ERP programs resembling SAP, Sage Oracle, Microsoft Navision, and many others. and in addition self-developed in-house options are EDI succesful usually. As well as, the mix of EDI with different forms of software program resembling warehouse administration programs, transport administration programs, or buyer relationship administration programs permits corporations to take a step ahead to uncover and use the total potential of their IT infrastructure.

Many of the massive gamers in the marketplace pressure their enterprise companions, particularly smaller companies, to be prepared for digital knowledge interchange. Failure to adjust to requirements, delays, or failure to implement EDI can result in lack of gross sales and deterioration of enterprise relationships between pharmaceutical corporations.

EDI is helpful for public well being

The EU strives to stop fraud throughout the pharma provide chain, the place counterfeit drugs doesn’t solely attain sufferers through unlawful means but in addition through a authorized provide chain. As a method of data exchange, EDI is a instrument that may contribute to stopping the unlawful entry of counterfeit drugs into the authorized provide chain and assist to realize the targets of EU directive 2011/62/UE.

When all events throughout the provide chain (for instance, suppliers, producers, and wholesalers) change paperwork through EDI, it permits supply routes to be traced, from suppliers to wholesalers and retailers. It’s also attainable to hint which supply has reached whom and the precise content material of that supply. Furthermore, It permits completely different enterprise companions to change principally all forms of paperwork in real-time.

This leads to the flexibility to observe all exchanged merchandise in real-time, which advantages the supervising authorities and the enterprise itself. This method will contribute considerably to the elimination of counterfeit drugs in authorized circulation.

The change of paperwork through EDI has solely advantages for all contributors:

Price discount

  • Fewer working employees required
  • Decrease administrative bills and forms


  • Important discount in failures and errors
  • Fast notification of inconsistencies
  • Quicker funds
  • Acceleration of processes
  • Lowered workplace work
  • Fast knowledge transmission

Upkeep of provide chain

  • Elevated reliability of delivered paperwork
  • Strengthening its personal place throughout the supply chain – many massive gamers within the pharma trade require the usage of EDI


  • Fulfill and persist with nationwide and worldwide requirements and rules
  • Assist to stop the entry of unlawful drugs into the authorized provide chain
  • Knowledge enrichment
  • Validation towards knowledge from different paperwork (for instance, three-way match)
  • Validations of a business and mathematical nature


The position of EDI within the pharma trade is rising steadily, and it’s anticipated that the rules regarding drug provide might be tightened sooner or later to guard populations and healthcare programs. Furthermore, pharma corporations seek for optimization alternatives as a way to stay aggressive in the marketplace. This leads to openness in the direction of new options and the difference of confirmed and dependable expertise – of which EDI has lengthy been an instance.

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