November 05, 2007
Teamcenter for Medical Devices
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Jeff Rowe - Managing Editor

by Jeff Rowe - Contributing Editor
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Siemens PLM Software and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) , a leading IT services, business solutions and outsourcing organization, announced Teamcenter for Medical Devices, the first fully integrated PLM solution for the medical device industry.

Teamcenter for Medical Devices leverages powerful Teamcenter foundation elements to deliver the most holistic and integrated solution for end-to-end management of the medical devices industry's product lifecycle. Teamcenter enables companies to fully trace all activities from concept to retirement by automatically linking compliance requirements with engineering and specification data. The solution combines compliance management, traceability and reporting capabilities to help medical devices manufacturers address strict quality and regulatory requirements, increasing competition and demanding time-to-market pressures.

"Guarding the health and safety of consumers is job one for Wright Medical and therefore complying with regulations set forth by regulatory agencies must be part of a comprehensive product lifecycle management strategy," said Amy Cooper, quality documentation supervisor, Wright Medical, a global orthopaedic medical device company specializing in the design, manufacture and marketing of reconstructive joint devices and biologics. "Siemens PLM Software's Teamcenter solution helps Wright Medical insure that information regarding our products will be available for the life of the product which can be 40, 80 or even 100 years."

Teamcenter for Medical Devices facilitates comprehensive program lifecycle management, which in turn results in faster design cycles, accelerated time to regulatory agency approval, fewer design and submittal iterations and lower costs for design, development, manufacturing, testing and tracing.

Teamcenter facilitates this strategic approach by tracking all of the product data that pertains to product development activities performed by a medical devices OEM and its suppliers. By integrating compliance management into a complete product lifecycle, Teamcenter virtually eliminates manual data entry, improves data accuracy and reduces the costs of both compliance and non-compliance.

"Wright Medical has dramatically enhanced the availability of compliance data and reduced the time it takes to access that data," added Cooper. "Teamcenter allows device history of the part to be available at the click of a button rather than having to search through physical files. Something that previously took weeks to find can now be accessed within minutes. Suppliers have direct access to data, enhancing efficiency and reducing time-to-market."

"With our recent launch of Teamcenter 2007 complete, Siemens PLM Software is making good on its commitment to expand its list of industry specific solutions that create real value through tailored functionality," said Steve Bashada, vice president of Teamcenter Applications, Siemens PLM Software. "Companies producing medical devices can now use Teamcenter to establish regulatory compliance as a strategic initiative by integrating the solution into their existing supply chain, design and manufacturing systems to support efficient data collection, reporting and traceability. Teamcenter's robust capabilities and integrated features establish the industry's premier quality assurance
environment for creating, managing, controlling, tracking and distributing all of the electronic product records associated with the medical devices lifecycle."

TCS' industry domain knowledge and solution development experience coupled with its system integration capabilities and channel partner relationships make it an instrumental partner in development and implementation of Teamcenter for Medical Devices. TCS' Engineering and Industrial Services Practice helps customers across the world focus on developing and bringing innovative and efficient products to market faster.

"Teamcenter for Medical Devices, developed in collaboration between TCS and Siemens PLM Software, is an innovative solution that caters to the needs of the growing global medical devices market. Teamcenter for Medical Devices encapsulates predefined compliance needs of the industry thus making it easy to deploy and reliable to use," said Regu Ayyaswamy, vice president, Engineering and Industrial Services, TCS. "TCS' two decade-old partnership with Siemens PLM Software has grown stronger with time and has brought benefits to a multitude of customers across the globe in industries such as high technology, medical devices, aerospace and automotive."

Commentary By Jeffrey Rowe, Editor

If there were ever two companies that could tackle the huge issues associated with the medical product design industry, these two are among the few that could do it. They are both multi-billion-dollar companies that are accustomed to dealing with big projects, and most medical products are definitely big with regard to reliability, liability, and regulatory compliance. It’s this last area where Teamcenter and its collaborative capabilities will really shine, with TCS serving as the Teamcenter integrator/implementer.

For its part, TCS is no stranger to the medical industry, since it has extensive experience in scientific and diagnostic instruments. As a part of the Tata Group, India's largest industrial conglomerate, TCS has over 100,000 IT consultants in 47 countries and revenues of $4.3 billion for its last fiscal year. So, it’s a pretty good-sized company any way you slice it.

Collaboration has increased between companies dealing with scientific instruments, laboratory informatics, pharmaceuticals, and diagnostics. Yet these enterprises are finding it difficult to keep pace with rapid technological changes, frequent product introductions, rising manufacturing costs, increased competition, and stringent regulations. To be able to focus on new instrument design and development successfully, enterprises are outsourcing their IT development and support functions to companies like TCS. Instrument manufacturers also are optimizing their manufacturing processes and collaborating with partners to co-develop products as well, again, with companies such as TCS. It
works with manufacturing companies in this sector to manage software development and maintenance activities, as well as execute strategies to streamline manufacturing processes and jointly develop products.

TCS realizes that in the medical product arena, regulatory compliance has become a core part of the business. By being regulatory compliant, enterprises can improve the overall quality of company operations and products, and more effectively support risk management decisions. With a view to resolve regulatory compliance issues, medical product companies are focusing on a comprehensive strategy rather than isolated applications that can help them manage the myriad regulations associated with those products. Through its experience, TCS understands the importance of regulatory compliance in the medical product industry and helps businesses use compliance as a business improvement tool.

Teamcenter is probably the UGS PLM component that has more exposure to more customers than the rest of its PLM suite combined. Teamcenter is an integrated suite of PLM software modules for managing product and process data. Teamcenter is best known for managing various types of CAx data, but it can be used for other kinds of data management, as well, including regulatory compliance. Again, Teamcenter is not just one, but actually several modules for managing data and processes, many of which are well-suited for the medical product design business, and can be tailored and implemented to work with companies of virtually any size.

Teamcenter for Medical Devices is a specialized “flavor” of Teamcenter that facilitates program lifecycle management, which in turn results in faster design cycles, accelerated time to regulatory agency approval, fewer design and submittal iterations and lower costs for design, development, manufacturing, testing and tracing. That’s a lot of ground to cover.

As I’ve stated before, by itself (and by definition), Teamcenter is not PLM, but does provide a crucial part of the PLM puzzle that is involved with process as well as product. Based on a multitude of factors, Teamcenter and PLM continue to move to design and manufacturing companies of all sizes. Some of these factors include regulatory compliance, shorter product lifecycles, or for companies to remain competitive and growing top-line revenue while cutting bottom-line expenses. These factors boil down to management issues and Teamcenter has proven well-suited to this task by a customer base and associated markets that continue to grow. UGS has been quite successful with Teamcenter
and this trend should continue with Teamcenter 2007. The relationship with TCS should only further the growth potential in this vital product sector.

The Week’s Top 5

At MCADCafé we track many things, including the stories that have attracted the most interest from our subscribers. Below are the five news items that were the most viewed during last week.

VX Corp. announced that VX CAD/CAM has been selected by the Erie Institute of Technology for use in their new manufacturing and technology programs. As part of a mold and die industry revival, the Erie Institute of Technology,, has recently added six new manufacturing programs and a new 50,000 square foot training center in Erie that includes computer labs for running CAD/CAM software and machine tools for providing hands on training. "VX CAD/CAM will have a big impact on our mold design and mold making programs. With VX mold design software, students will learn how to import models, fix undercuts, gaps and poorly defined draft angles while realizing the advantages of using software with built-in plastic processing know-how," said Kit Carson, CNC
Program Director. "For machining molds, VX's QuickMill will help students learn roughing and advanced finishing techniques, how to optimize machine tool utilization for reducing wear and tear, and how to produce high-quality finished molds that minimize polishing time."

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-- Jeff Rowe, Contributing Editor.


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