Facility Readiness Goal Date Decisions Under GDUFA

The Generic Drug User Fee Amendments (GDUFA) aim to streamline the approval process for generic drugs, ensuring timely access to affordable medications. A crucial aspect of this process is the Facility Readiness Goal Date Decisions, which influence the FDA’s timelines for reviewing and approving generic drug applications.

Key Highlights from the FDA Guidance


  • The guidance outlines the FDA’s approach to setting goal dates based on a facility’s readiness for inspection.
  • Goal dates are crucial for the FDA to plan and allocate resources effectively for the assessment of generic drug applications.


  • GDUFA was first enacted in 2012 to improve the efficiency of the FDA’s review process for generic drugs.
  • The amendments have been reauthorized to further refine and enhance the FDA’s ability to assess and approve generic drugs.

Facility Readiness Assessment

  • Applicants must evaluate and certify the readiness of their facilities using Form FDA 356h.
  • Readiness means compliance with current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP), accurate and complete data, and readiness for commercial manufacturing.
  • The FDA will not proceed with the substantive assessment of an application if any facility is not ready for inspection.
  • Inaccurate representation of facility readiness may cause a delay in or Refusal to Approve an application.

Reporting on Form FDA 356h

  • Applicants must indicate the inspection readiness of each manufacturing or testing facility.
  • Facilities must be aware they are listed on Form FDA 356h and must confirm their readiness status to avoid inspection delays.
  • To facilitate goal date reassignment, FDA recommends the applicant state in the cover letter “Facility Ready for Inspection” along with the ANDA number

Goal Date Assignment

  • If a facility is not ready for inspection, the FDA assigns a default 15-month goal date and defers substantive review until readiness is confirmed.
  • Applicants can reset the goal date to a standard or priority assessment goal once all facilities are inspection-ready.
  • If the readiness status is not updated 30 days before the 15-month goal date, the FDA will extend the goal date by an additional 15 months.

Importance of Facility Readiness

  • Regulatory Compliance: Ensuring facilities meet the FDA’s rigorous standards is essential for maintaining drug quality and safety.
  • Efficient Approval: Timely readiness of facilities helps avoid delays in the approval process, facilitating quicker market access for generic drugs.
  • Strategic Planning: Proper facility readiness aligns with the FDA’s resource allocation and planning, supporting more predictable and timely reviews.


The integration of facility readiness into GDUFA’s goal date decisions underscores the importance of having compliant, inspection-ready facilities in the generic drug approval process. Adhering to these guidelines ensures that generic drug applications move smoothly through the FDA’s review pipeline, ultimately benefiting public health by providing timely access to safe, effective, and affordable medications.
This summary encapsulates the core aspects of the FDA’s guidance on facility readiness and its impact on goal date decisions under GDUFA. For detailed information, industry professionals are encouraged to review the full guidance document.

Read also: ANDA Submission Prior Approval Supplements

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