Virtual Data Rooms for Life Sciences: Benefits and Use Cases

The life science (pharma, biotech, medical device, and medical products) industry is rapidly growing. Many leading companies have already recognized the opportunity offered by virtual data rooms. 

As many life science companies work on a global scale, effective collaboration is critical for success. Data rooms provide both sensitive data protection and smooth collaboration efficiently. Here are the main benefits of data rooms for life sciences.

Key advantages of data rooms in life science industries

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Data rooms can help life science companies optimize R&D without compromising data security. In addition, virtual data rooms offer the following benefits:

Easy setup

Virtual data rooms have a user-friendly interface and automated functions, such as automatic index numbering as you upload files, making it easier for you to set up and integrating a VDR in your business operations. All you must do is prepare all documents in a digital format and have a clear idea of the user permission structure. Data rooms typically allow you to set up granular user permissions, restrict some functions like download, print, forward, or specify permissions for certain file types.

Confidentiality

Perhaps the most important benefit for data room users is the level of confidentiality and security. Life science companies must work with sensitive patient data or intellectual property that must be shared with caution and undergo regulatory compliance such as Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA, USA), Data Protection Act (UK), or General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR, EU). Virtual data rooms ensure high-level security and customizable user permissions, which decrease human error, i.e., accidentally sharing sensitive data with the wrong parties. 

HIPAA Compliance 

When sharing sensitive patient health information with involved caretakers, providers, or researchers, data must be protected under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). The same applies to patient data used for R&D in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. HIPAA compliance is important not only for legal protection but also for maintaining patient trust. To ensure patient privacy is being protected, look for a virtual data room provider whose service is backed by HIPAA certification and complies with ISO/IEC 27001:2013 standard.

Document and user tracking

Research and development in life science typically involve many participants: researchers, doctors, salespeople, marketing experts, investors, regulators, and distributors. As a data room administrator, you can access a user activity log and oversee all actions within the data room, thus controlling the virtual workspace. This function ensures transparency and helps you understand partner interest, for example, the most viewed case studies, the most updated/edited documents, etc. You can also monitor all communication among partners and generate reports easily.

On-site partner collaboration

A virtual data room brings structure and order to any project. As data itself has become one of the most important assets in biotech and pharma R&D, a digital workplace ensures data is used and shared effectively. Data rooms make it effortless for global teams to collaborate anytime from anywhere. On-site teams can also benefit from a data room — an online workspace can help organize workflows, delegate tasks, keep track of progress, and mitigate data breaches more effectively. 

24/7 support

Life science organizations typically run simultaneous projects, including fundraising, clinical trials and drug development, and manufacturing and distribution (M&D) deals. Dealing with technical or IT issues should be hassle-free. Choosing a virtual data room provider with a customer support team available 24/7 can save much time and trouble navigating unexpected software issues. Available customer support is also crucial in case guidance is needed when setting up some advanced VDR functions. In life sciences, timing can be everything; therefore, a VDR provider can resolve issues quickly and efficiently, saving you the frustration.

Use cases of data rooms in life science industries

Regardless of the project, biotech and pharmaceutical companies work with an enormous amount of data and paperwork. Considering that data rooms offer extensive document management and security features, virtual data room software has many uses in life science. Here are some examples of how to use a virtual data room for specific situations: 

  • Clinical trials. Organize all documentation and files, effectively communicate with clinical research service providers directly on the platform, and upload, review, and share reports in a centralized virtual workspace. Keep confidential information secure by setting permission-based access to authorized parties.
  • Biotech IPO. Go through all IPO stages more efficiently and save resources. Use advanced Q&A for fast and effective communication. Create multiple teams, including legal, financial, and executive, and set appropriate access to documents for each team. Take advantage of 24/7/365 access to expand your potential investor pool.
  • Fundraising. Use a VDR to disclose confidential information with potential investors while keeping trade secrets, intellectual property, and employee personal information secure. Share large volumes of information and manage due diligence in an organized, stress-free manner.
  • Accelerating R&D. VDR features like drag-and-drop upload, bulk upload, index numbering, and labels can speed up R&D and make it easier to analyze large data pools. Progress reviews can be done more effectively with automated reports. Enhance collaboration with 24/7/365 access, options to delegate tasks, and advanced Q&A functions.
  • Licensing and partnering. Speed up due diligence for licensing and partnering with a data room without jeopardizing data security. Having all the necessary information in a virtual workspace expands your reach in the global market and lets you negotiate with multiple stakeholders simultaneously.
  • IP management. Use a VDR to protect your organizations’ intellectual property during clinical trials, licensing, fundraising, mergers, audits, and other business operations. With a data room, you can revoke access to files at any time — even downloaded documents. You can also regularly monitor who has viewed confidential items in your VDR and keep track of all user activity. Use two-factor authentication and watermarks to add an extra layer of protection.

The ability to quickly adapt and introduce innovative digital tools will determine the success of the company’s R&D incentives and determine patient trust in confidentiality. Ultimately, the organizations that do not act quickly may lose a competitive advantage offered by virtual data rooms.


References:

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