Pharmacy Product Number
A Pharmacy Product Number, or PPN, is a unique identifier that aims to harmonise national number systems for pharmaceutical products. It is used to track and manage the distribution of medications across the supply chain.
Pharmacy product numbers typically consist of a series of digits that represent information such as the product name, strength, form, and manufacturer. They are used by healthcare providers and pharmacies to accurately identify and dispense medications to patients.
A PPN holds the following elements:
- Data identifier (DI) of 9N (this identifies the barcode as PPN)
- The product registration agency code (a two-digit prefix that identifies the coding system that the registered product number is based on)
- Registered product number (the product information, which is encoded according to the specified Product Registration Agency coding system)
- Check digits
In the United States, the PPN is known as the National Drug Code (NDC) and is assigned by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In Canada, it is known as the Drug Identification Number (DIN) and is assigned by Health Canada. Other countries may have their own unique systems for assigning pharmacy product numbers.
The use of pharmacy product numbers helps to ensure patient safety by reducing the risk of medication errors and enabling traceability throughout the supply chain. They also facilitate the monitoring of medication use, efficacy, and safety.