I have only took a quick glance at the new revision and it appears to have more meat on the bones - which is not surprising given that the current annex has been around since 2001.
The following are only some of the updates that I noted.
- The numbering system has changed since the '01 version. e.g. planning for validation (section 2 in '01) is now in section 1 of the new guide.
- Quality Risk Management is featured and ICH Q8, Q9 and Q10 are provided as examples for supporting validation and qualification tasks. Risk assessments are not seen as a once off event during planning stages, but a continuous activity.
- People with a software engineering background will recognise the notion of conditional approvals into subsequent validation stages where certain acceptance criteria of deviations have not been met (3.1).
- Software engineers will also recognise the concept of the new Factory acceptance test/Site acceptance test step included prior to IQ at section 3.4 to 3.7. As a quick glance, this looks like a promising inclusion: complex technology should be evaluated at the vendor, demonstrate confirmation to the URS; support a least burdensome approach by removing duplication of tests in later stages.
- IQ and OQ can be combined if applicable.
- Process Validation has bee expanded upon
- New sections for Verification of Transportation; Validation of Packaging; Validation of Utilities and Validation of Test Methods.
- Cleaning Validation appears to have more detail.
- There is a specific section on Re-Qualification (10)
- Change Control is expanded, with Quality Risk management referenced.
- The glossary has been extended.
The annex contents may change as a result of the public consultation.