Drug Fix

06/10/2013 - 10:23am

A 26-member joint panel comprising the Food and Drug Administration's Endocrinologic and Metabolic Drugs and Drug Safety and Risk Management advisory committees voted to support modifying or removing the risk evaluation and mitigation strategy protocol for GlaxoSmithKline's Type 2 diabetes drug Avandia (rosiglitazone).

Historically, the FDA has followed advisory committee votes when making a decision on the marketing of a drug even though it is not bound by them, but assuming the agency follows the panel's advice, it could mean a lot for the controversial drug and the way it's dispensed. But even if Avandia winds up on retail pharmacy shelves again, it faces a very different landscape from its heyday.

06/03/2013 - 11:31am

Independent pharmacy was provided a social media stepping stone with last week's announcement pairing the National Community Pharmacists Association and RxWiki. The companies announced a joint digital solutions offering that will raise the profile of independents across both social media and mobile platforms.

06/03/2013 - 11:01am

Efforts to create a generic top-level domain for legitimate pharmacy websites gained traction last week when the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN - the body that controls what goes into Internet URLs - gave the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy a passing grade for an initial evaluation of its plans for the domain, ".pharmacy."

If successful, the .pharmacy domain will create a powerful new weapon to combat the rise of illegal online pharmacies, which, according to many studies, constitute all but 3% of the websites selling drugs on the Internet. These are the "Canadian" pharmacies selling cheap drugs that one often sees links to on search engines and other websites; despite their supposed provenance, they're usually based in countries where regulations are lax or unenforced.

06/03/2013 - 10:58am

Target has announced that it is expanding its Beauty Concierge program with approximately 200 stores implementing the program during 2013.

This is important as it reflects a larger trend that is taking place within mass-market beauty — retailers are becoming increasingly aggressive in elevating the beauty shopping experience at mass. With a melding of upscale décor, higher-end beauty brands, in-store services and innovative technology, they are working to become a beauty destination for savvy shoppers.

05/17/2013 - 3:23pm

Alliance Boots posted a double-digit adjusted profit gain of 12.7% to $1.2 billion for its year ended March 31. Almost half of that profit is staked by Walgreens with its 45% share of the European pharmaceutical distributing powerhouse.

A couple days later, Alliance Boots along with Walgreens and AmerisourceBergen announced the necessary regulatory clearances on that strategic partnership, cementing the three companies in place as the largest generic pharmaceutical acquisition company in the world. That deal will further enable the company's to realize greater profit margins.

05/17/2013 - 1:34pm

Long Island University gave its Distinguished Alumnus award to C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries owner Ian Ginsberg, a 1985 graduate of the university's pharmacy school.

C.O. Bigelow isn't just any drug store - it's the oldest one in the country, having been founded in 1838. Ginsberg's family has owned it since his grandfather, William Ginsberg, bought it in 1939. So, as one might ask a centenarian, what's C.O. Bigelow's secret?

05/17/2013 - 1:13pm

During the 2013 Retail Clinician Education Congress last week in Las Vegas, a select group of leaders in graduate nursing education and nursing practice gathered for a historic roundtable discussion.

The roundtable discussion was indeed historic and marked an important event within the convenient care industry as nurse leaders and universities came together to talk and strategize on ways to strengthen the relationship between practice and graduate nursing education in emerging models of care.

05/10/2013 - 4:15pm

The Specialty Pharmacy Certification Board will begin certifying specialty pharmacists who pass a comprehensive exam in October. The exam is designed to cover the entire specialty pharmacy process, including intake, clinical management, fulfillment and outcomes.

The National Association of Specialty Pharmacy, which oversees the SPCB, is bringing to bear some real advocacy and structure to the highly fragmented specialty pharmacy marketplace. The DSN Group, including its specialty pharmacy publication of the same name Specialty Pharmacy, applauds these efforts.

05/10/2013 - 3:48pm

More than 300 community pharmacists helped educate their legislators over crucial small business issues as part of the NCPA's 2013 Legislative and Government Affairs conference. All told, the pharmacists conducted more than 500 meetings with congressional offices.

There is a reason why our industry is poised to play a larger role in health reform. Five years ago or more, the PBMs had Washington's ear. But today, pharmacy is doing a much better job of telling its story. Counting NACDS' recent RX Impact day, retail pharmacy has conducted more than 900 meetings with legislators in the past eight weeks or so.

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