FDA Medical Device Development Tool (MDDT) Qualification

Medical Device Development Tool (MDDT) Qualification

The US FDA has provided guidance on the methods and approaches to qualify a medical device development tool so that medical device manufacturers or sponsors can use them to support the development and evaluation of medical devices.  The manufacturer is expected to ensure the tool produces “scientifically-plausible measurements” and works as intended within the specified intended use of the tool.  Some specific points in the guidance for medical device development tool qualification are:

  • Specification of the intended use and the scope of the product areas covered
  • What the medical device development tool measures or produces as an output
  • Role of the medical device development tool with respect to clinical uses or study parameters
  • Phases of the medical device development lifecycle where the medical device development tool will be used

Read more about the medical device development tool qualification program at this link: https://www.fda.gov/MedicalDevices/ScienceandResearch/MedicalDeviceDevelopmentToolsMDDT/ucm20041609.htm

This is generally for tools related to evaluation of clinical performance.  The final guidance for the MDDT was issued August 10, 2017 and can be viewed and downloaded here:  FDA Final Guidance on MDDT-2017.

If you are new to validation of tools and software not actually in the medical device, see our Post on validation of these types of software:  Production and Process Validation

About the author

Brian Pate helps medical device companies achieve efficient and FDA regulatory compliant product development to produce higher quality and clinically valued software. He began his career in clinical research in 1985 with the Department of Anesthesiology at UAB developing closed-loop control systems for the automated delivery of gases and control. In 1990, he made the switch from university research to the medical device industry designing control systems, communication interfaces, user interface, and other software for real-time embedded systems and clinical information systems, working for medical device companies including Johnson & Johnson, Baxter Healthcare, and GE Medical. Today, he is a Partner and the General Manager of Crisis Prevention and Recovery LLC (dba SoftwareCPR®), a general-purpose regulatory consulting firm that is recognized globally for their expertise with standards and national regulations pertaining to medical device, mobile medical app, and HealthIT software. He has taught the AAMI/FDA course on Software Regulation to FDA Reviewers at FDA and is currently the lead faculty for the public version of that course taught annually along with FDA staff. Brian served on the AAMI/FDA TIR working group that created AAMI TIR32 Guidance on the application of ISO 14971 to Software (later superseded by IEC 80002-1). He later served on the original AAMI/FDA working group that created the AAMI TIR45-2012 TIR Guidance on the use of Agile practices in the development of medical device software and is currently the co-chair leading the creation of the 2nd edition of TIR45. He has served as faculty for all offerings of the AAMI/FDA Compliant Use of Agile Methods public course. Brian also served as an instructor for the AAMI Design Controls course. He is also a member of the Underwriters’ Laboratories Standards Technical Panel 5500, Remote Software Updates. He now serves as a member of the AAMI Software Committee.

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