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Technical documentation for IVDR

Before manufacturers can places in-vitro diagnostic medical devices (IVDs) on to the European Market for commercial use, they must meet the requirements of the European IVD Regulation – IVDR (2017/746/EU), and obtain a CE mark. The manufacturer must demonstrate that the product is safe, effective and meets the relevant regulatory requirements. This is done by preparing a series of technical documents.

What comprises Technical Documentation under the IVDR?

In Vitro Diagnostic (IVD) Technical Documentation is a crucial part of the regulatory process for IVD devices. It demonstrates conformity to the General Safety and Performance Requirements (GSPRs) according to the Annex I of the regulation. The documentation must reflect the current status of the IVD medical device through the application of the manufacturer’s Quality Management System (QMS). The GSPR covers 3 broad areas, described within 3 chapters:

  • General requirements
  • Requirements regarding performance, design and manufacture
  • Requirements regarding information supplied with the device

The layout of the Technical Documentation required for the IVDR is much more defined compared to the previous approach under the IVD Directive. The manufacturer is required to compile the documents in line with the requirements of Annex II (technical documentation) & III (post market surveillance). The structure laid out in Annex II allows a more consistent approach for creating technical documents for IVDs, with sufficient ability to include or exclude (with sufficient justification) some elements depending on the specific nature or intended purpose of the device.

Once these have been met, the manufacturer can then draw up a Declaration of Conformity stating that the device is in compliance with the relevant regulation. For higher risk classes B-D, this will be done on completion of a Conformity Assessment process performed by an EU Notified Body.

What are the requirements?

The file shall include the following sections (these are the main headings in Annex II:

  • Device Description and Specification
  • Information Supplied by the Manufacturer
  • Design and Manufacturing Information
  • General Safety and Requirements (Annex I)
  • Benefit-Risk Analysis and Risk Management
  • Product Verification and Validation

The data above is required to be presented in a clear, organised, readily searchable and unambiguous manner, so that the documents can be easily read and understood. The aim of the technical documents are to provide a reader with a narrative of how the device has been designed and developed and is safe and effective when used as intended.

In most cases, the documents shall be presented to the notified body (for a class B, C and D device) electronically, so it would be advantageous to prepare and hold all documents electronically, ideally within a dedicated electronic Quality Management System (typically compliant to ISO 13485)

What data do you need to provide?

While some elements of the Technical Documentation is well defined, for example, you must provide all labels and instructions for use in the applicable languages of the European Union, much of the content can vary depending on the function, technology and intended purpose of the device, as long as the basic structure of the table of the contents remains consistent to Annex II.

When compiling your documents, it is well worth understanding any specific requirements based on how the device is used, e.g. if a self-test or near patient test, or with an integrated software element, as this will require additional information to be provided. It is also recommended to discuss your technical documentation layout with your notified body, who may have published specific guidance in how the documents should be presented. In addition to this, refer to guidance from Team AB (the European association of Medical Device Notified Bodies).

Final Thoughts

Both manufacturers and Notified Bodies have an interest to ensure a speedy technical review period. The closer Manufacturers align with the structure of Annex II, provide sufficient evidence to demonstrate conformity in a way that can be easily understood, the quicker (and cheaper) the review process will be.

It should also be remembered that the IVDR technical documentation acts as an iterative and traceable record telling the story of the history of the device. An effective, well-constructed technical file can be of huge benefit when retrospectively reviewing design changes, post market surveillance and risk management for your devices.

IVDeology is ideally placed to support IVD manufacturers in the completion of technical documentation to support CE submission. We have a successful and established process of building template structures, gap analysis and implementation. For any support required for CE marking, please contact us for a chat by clicking here

Written by Stuart Angell, MD and founder of IVDeology Ltd and IVDeology UKRP Ltd

#MDR #IVDR #diagnostics #technicalfile #techfile #invitrodiagnostic #cemark


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Notified Bodies Survey on certifications and applications (MDR/IVDR)

Last week saw the revised version of the Notified Bodies Survey on certifications and applications (MDR/IVDR) published by the European Commission. [Survey NBs availability (europa.eu)]

While there are still no conclusions made from the results of the survey, it does offer a useful insight on the current state of play for the transition to the MDR for medical devices and IVDR for in-vitro diagnostics.

The challenges the industry has faced to achieve compliance to the new regulations has been widely discussed [refer to previous blogs], resulting in continued delays to the implementation of the regulations, based largely on the state of readiness of the regulatory infrastructure of the EU system.

The regulation has been designed “to ensure the smooth functioning of the internal market as regards in vitro diagnostic medical devices, taking as a base a high level of protection of health for patients and users, and taking into account the small and medium-sized enterprises that are active in this sector.”

From <https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX%3A32017R0746&qid=1685433681978>

 In reality, the challenge for SMEs to comply to the new IVDR is great, given the additional data burden, time, and money required to obtain a CE mark. I have often wondered if the EU market is a step too far as a 1st launch country for SMEs, over the opportunity of US market access – and the UK (if the regulators can identify a pragmatic approach under IDAP).

It is therefore an interest to see the graph shown in the report:

The survey highlighted that the NB have SMEs as their main clients for conformity assessment, this is a positive message in that SMEs are still preparing for IVDR compliance, and it will be interesting to see how the implementation of IVDR is achieved for small and medium size businesses.

Here at IVDeology, an immediate question that came from the information above is that the definition of SME encompasses a large number of organisations but internally the teams can vary in size, and the ones we commonly work with here at IVDeology would be at the lower end of the scale. It would be good to know the spread of size of SME’s out there so that we can understand the landscape and dynamic of those hoping to grow.

IVDeology works throughout the whole IVD industry, including supporting SMEs along their path to compliance. For further information on how we can support you, contact [email protected]

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Updated classification for SARS CoV-2

Recently we saw Team-NB release a Position Paper on the Classification of devices intended to detect SARS-CoV-2. There has been a lot of discussion about whether SARS-CoV-2 IVDs should remain classified as a Class D under the requirement of detecting a transmissible agent that causes a life-threatening disease with a high or suspected high risk of propagation. The Team-NB Position Paper is that this classification should be re-assessed based on the facts that there are effective vaccines available, currently no circulating variants of concerns and evidence that the current circulating variants within the EU indicate no increased impact on immunity or severity for the general population.

There are two possible re-classification routes that are suggested:

· Class B – under rule 6 – devices not covered by the other classification rules.

· Class C – under rule 3c – devices where there is a significant risk that an erroneous result would cause death or severe disability to the individual, foetus or embryo being tested, or to the individual’s offspring.

Team-NB’s position is that Class C should be recommended due to the potential remaining risk for vulnerable populations and the limited data available for the post-pandemic phase. This would also ensure that stricter PMS & Performance Evaluation/Clinical Evidence requirements are applied for these devices.

This could be welcome news to manufacturers of these devices. We will need to see if this leads to a change in the MDCG guidance – watch this space!

Team-NB-PositionPaper-Classification-of-SARS-Cov2-20240202.pdf

Written by Fiona Thompson – Regulatory specialist at IVDeology