Best Practices for Environmental Monitoring in the Life Science & Laboratory Sectors

Best Practices for Environmental Monitoring in the Life Science & Laboratory Sectors

  1. Automated laboratory environmental monitoring systems are essential for all Life Science & Laboratory operations and involve collecting data on various environmental parameters that affect the quality of products and samples being stored. Having the correct temperature monitoring systems and practices in place is critical to ensuring that products are stored correctly, and contamination or degradation of sensitive products is prevented.
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  3. Below is a list of suggested best practices for Life Science & Laboratory facilities to take into consideration when selecting the right Environmental Monitoring System (EMS):
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  1. Data Collection Techniques

  1. To establish effective laboratory environmental monitoring, the initial step is identifying parameters requiring monitoring. In Life Sciences & Laboratory settings, critical parameters include temperature and humidity, and calibrated sensors provide the best means of collecting this data. The sensors sample parameters such as temperature and humidity every few seconds and will immediately notify designated recipients in the event of an excursion. This ensures that laboratory managers have visibility of their temperature-sensitive products and can take appropriate action to identify the root causes of these breaches.
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  1. Communication and Reporting

  1. Communicating the results of data to stakeholders including Laboratory Managers, Quality Assurance personnel, and Regulatory Bodies, is crucial. Dashboards, alerts, and reports can be generated automatically or manually to summarise the collected data over a specific period.
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  3. ColdCloud™™, a cloud-based management platform, is an example of a dashboard that enables the monitoring of various parameters, such as temperature, humidity, CO2, differential pressure, and power status. It allows users to set alarm parameters for each asset, choose notification preferences, either via Email, SMS, or Smartphone App, pre-empt failures to prevent product loss, ensure compliance, maintain safety standards, log incidents, and take corrective action for alarms. With this advanced technology, users can identify trends and anomalies within the laboratory and receive notifications to prevent the loss of products and specimens.
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  1. Evaluation and Audits

  1. Regular evaluation and audits are crucial for an effective Automated Temperature Monitoring System. Evaluation can help identify areas of improvement and ensures that the monitoring system remains effective, while audits help identify potential issues and ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. A thorough environmental monitoring system audit should include a review of the monitoring plan, parameter selection, data collection techniques, and reporting methods. It should also include a review of any corrective actions taken in response to environmental monitoring results. By conducting regular bi-annual evaluations and audits, organisations can continuously ensure compliance with relevant regulations.
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  1. Scalability 

  1. The Environmental Monitoring System (EMS) should be scalable and adaptable to changing conditions, such as the expansion of a particular laboratory, and should be able to accommodate additional sensors. Scalability ensures that a system can handle growing demand and workload. As a business grows and attracts more customers, it needs to ensure that the system can handle increased data from additional fridges, freezers, and incubators without experiencing downtime or slow performance.
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  1. Implementing Strategies and Methods for Sampling and Quality Controlling
  1. To ensure effective laboratory environmental monitoring, it is essential to implement methods for sampling and quality control. The selection of parameters should be developed based on the criticality of the products or samples stored, and guidelines from governing bodies. A real-world example of this is monitoring the temperature of blood products every minute to ensure laboratories are compliant with relevant standards.
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  3. Quality control measures should also be implemented to ensure the system’s accuracy and reliability, including regular calibration of sensors, validation of the Environmental Monitoring System’s (EMS) accuracy, and conducting periodic checks of the system over time. By implementing these measures, organisations can maintain an effective, compliant Environmental Monitoring System (EMS) and ensure the quality and safety of their products and samples.
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  1. Conclusion

  1. Implementing best practices for monitoring specific environments is crucial for the correct storage of temperature-sensitive assets and utilising solutions that allow for streamlined, efficient, and reliable environmental monitoring.
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  3. Autima is a trusted provider of automated Cold Chain and Automated Temperature Monitoring Systems to leading global industries, including the Life Sciences & Laboratory sectors. Our cutting-edge solutions ensure that critical parameters such as temperature, humidity, and air quality are monitored, helping our clients maintain compliance and safeguard their valuable assets.

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