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Sandra Levy

Senior Editor

ARTICLES BY THIS AUTHOR

September 2020

A pink and blue pill with money inside.

The U.S. healthcare system saved $313 billion in 2019 due to low-cost generics, according to a new report by the Association for Accessible Medicines.

Generic pill bottles.

The Tecfidera brand and generic had a market value of roughly $3.8 billion for the most recent 12 months ended June 2020, according to IQVIA.

A girl receiving a vaccination.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores’ flu vaccine message will air in Washington, D.C., on presidential debate day and debate reaction day.

An envelope with paper in it with a check mark.

GSK’s Nucala has received the Food and Drug Administration’s approval for patients with HES, a group of rare blood disorders.

Pills on top of money.

As part of the President’s plan, on Thursday, HHS issued a final rule to implement a provision of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to allow the importation of certain prescription drugs from Canada.

Injectable vials.

Brand and generic sales for Precedex in 0.9% sodium chloride injection were $210 million for the most recent 12 months ended June 2020, according to IQVIA.

The words approved in caps and red letters.

Vertex's Kalydeco, which was first approved in 2012, has received the FDA nod for an expanded indication that will provide a Cystic Fibrosis treatment for children ages four months to less than six months old.

Camber's generic Tecfidera provides a treatment for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis.

White pill bottle against a blue background.

Salix will maintain market exclusivity for Xifaxan (rifaximin) 200 mg and 550 mg tablets until 2028.

Two modern office buildings.

Auxo is making a foray into pharmaceutical packaging with the acquisition of Euclid Medical’s Precision Products Group brand.

People of different races holding hands.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores is joining the March of Dimes’ #BlanketChange campaign to raise awareness of and eliminate racial and health disparities.

A gold star trophy.

ValuCare Center received Health Mart’s top honor for its superior clinical performance, high-touch patient relationships and proactive advocacy efforts.

A hand holding a prescription box.

Tripoint will commercialize SPARC's Elepsia XR tablets for five years, with the option to extend the agreement further.

Schnucks is making a $100,000 donation to be used to supply students in St. Louis with iPads and laptops, as well as to provide wireless hotspots.

A hand holding a generic pill bottle.

Divalproex sodium ER tablets had a market value of approximately $130 million, according to IQVIA July 2020 data.

Pharmacy shelves with various medications.

Hikma said it now expects to receive FDA approval for its generic Advair Diskus in early 2021.

A man holding an FDA approved sign.

Zydus Cadila’s generic K-Dur will be available in dosage strengths of 750 mg and 1,500 mg.

Hands typing on a keyboard.

More than 80% of AllianceRx Walgreens Prime’s specialty patients are eligible to complete clinical assessments online.

A man at a laptop.

The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board's new certificate in controlled substances diversion prevention is one of five PTCB specialty certificates that count toward becoming an Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician.

Teva Respiratory's AirDuo Digihaler and ArmonAir Digihaler contain built-in Bluetooth technology, enabling connection with a companion mobile app.

A pharmacist at a computer.

NowRx is one of two finalists in the “Highest Accuracy” category of Surescripts White Coat Awards, which recognizes the best e-prescription accuracy as of Aug. 1, based on the Surescripts Quality Index Score.

A gold star trophy.

The National Association of Specialty Pharmacy’s Strategic Partner of the Year Award recognized ParcelShield for helping specialty pharmacies ensure more effective on-time delivery of critical medication therapies.

The “Yuk to Yum” service, normally valued at $2.99, will be free for a limited time at all Kinney Drugs’ locations.

Generic pill bottles.

Dr. Reddy's will be able to sell volume-limited amounts of generic lenalidomide capsules after March 2022, and an unlimited volume beginning Jan. 31, 2026.

CVS Health's plans to add 2,000 more COVID-19 drive-thru testing sites will bring its total number of sites to 4,000 by mid-October.

More than 4,000 community pharmacies are immunizing this year.

In a Drug Store News webinar, Dan Mack, founder and managing director of Mack Elevation, provided insight into what is needed for successful retailer and supplier partnerships in the future.

CVS Health is reminding patients to refill their prescriptions as Hurricane Sally approaches and makes landfall.

Injectable vials.

Liposomal doxorubicin injection had a market value of approximately $124 million for the 12 months ended July 2020, according to IQVIA.

People seated in a lecture room.

At its first virtual ThoughtSpot annual conference, AmerisourceBergen recognized Family Pharmacy of Pottsboro, Lily’s Pharmacy of Johns Creek, and McCoy-Tygart Drug as finalists for Good Neighbor Pharmacy’s 2020 Pharmacy of the Year Award.

A yellow star among stars.

Rick Miller, vice president of clinical and professional services at AllianceRx Walgreens Prime is the recipient of the National Association of Specialty Pharmacy's Distinguished Service Award.

Vials of injectables.

The administration plans to use McKesson as its main distributor for a COVID-19 vaccine, which will be transported to distribution sites within 24 hours after the FDA grants an EU or approval.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores will be highly visible at the National Conference of State Legislatures Base Camp 2020, a new online experience that takes place from Sept. 15 to 17.

A hand holding a document and another hand signing it with a pen.

Specialty pharma company Akorn will move forward under a new ownership structure in the coming weeks.

A puzzle piece with a stick figure.

The American Pharmacists Association is welcoming Rafael Saenz as chief of staff and Antonio Ciaccia as its senior advisor for disruptive innovation and practice transformation.

Bartell's storefront.

Bartell’s 67 locations are participating in the Washington State secure drug take-back program, which is intended for the safe disposal of leftover and expired prescriptions.

Vials containing injection.

Pfizer said it expects to know by the end of October if its COVID-19 vaccine works, although it isn't known if Americans will receive it before 2021.

A man holding an FDA approved sign.

Prednisone tablets have a market value of roughly $12 million, according to IQVIA July 2020 data.

A hand holding a gavel.

Vascepa has a market value of approximately $1.1 billion for the 12 months ended July 2020.

A healthcare preparing a vaccination.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores is teaming up with the Howard University College of Pharmacy and United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to create awareness about flu vaccines among communities subject to healthcare disparities.

A man holding an FDA approved sign.

Trelegy Ellipta is now approved for the treatment of COPD and asthma.

Injectable vials.

Azacitidine for injection had a market value of approximately $82 million for the 12 months ended July 2020, according to IQVIA.

Injectable vials.

Eli Lilly's $35 co-pay card is intended to help people with high-deductible insurance plans who otherwise face challenging out-of-pocket costs, as well as those who don't have insurance.

In addition to offering COVID-19 testing for children age 12 years old and older, CVS Health is adding more than 120 testing sites.

Topical gel.

Dr. Reddy’s is offering over-the-counter diclofenac sodium topical gel 1%, the store brand version of GSK Consumer Healthcare's Voltaren Arthritis Pain

Signing of a contract.

ScriptPro will deploy its inventory management solution across the Department of Veterans Affairs' pharmacy network.

Liquid oral in a bottle.

Amneal is bringing generic Axid, an oral liquid formulation of nizatidine, back to market.

The Department of Health and Human Services has issued a guidance that will enable pharmacists to order and administer COVID-19 vaccinations to patients age 3 years old and older.

Bottles with oral liquids.

Athena Bioscience's Qdolo is an alternative for patients who have trouble swallowing pills.

Schnucks storefront.

Schnuck Markets’ new supermarket in Columbia, Mo., will add approximately 80 new jobs when it opens in spring 2021.

A hand holding a generic pill bottle.

Leflunomide tablets had a market value of roughly $42 million, according to June IQVIA data.

A case of injectables.

Remodulin injection had a market value of roughly $466.1 million for the 12 months ended December 2019.

A healthcare worker putting gloves on.

The National Community Pharmacists Association’s CEO, Doug Hoey, has been enlisted to work on Operation Warp Speed's efforts to get a COVID-19 vaccine in record time.

Injectable vials.

Faslodex and its generic had a market value of approximately $407 million for the most recent 12 months ended June 2020, according to IQVIA.

The words approved in caps and red letters.

Roche's Gavreto is indicated for the treatment of adults with metastatic rearranged during transfection fusion-positive non-small cell lung cancer as detected by an FDA-approved test.

A healthcare worker giving an immunization.

The American Pharmacists Association and 12 pharmacy organizations are urging the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine to give pharmacists tier 1 priority status in the allocation and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.

Schnucks storefront.

Schnuck Markets' fundraising for Folds of Honor Foundation will provide 170 scholarships to families of military veterans.

Vials of tablets.

Zydus Cadila's generic ProAmatine is approved in dosage strengths of 2.5 mg, 5 mg, and 10 mg.

A boardroom with people in it.

Boehringer Ingelheim's recently named U.S. county managing director, president and CEO Jean-Michel Boers is becoming a member of PhRMA's board of directors.

A pharmacist preparing a prescription in a bottle.

The Concerta brand and generic had a market value of roughly $1.2 billion for the most recent 12 months ending June 2020, according to IQVIA.

Walmart exterior.

Oak Street Health clinics in three Walmart Supercenters will focus on offering value-based care to Medicare patients.

Albertsons exterior.

Albertsons’ children-focused immunization push is aimed at filling a gap in child wellness services created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

A gold star trophy.

Hamacher Resource Group has won the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Top Workplaces award for the fourth straight year.

A healthcare worker preparing a vaccine.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores is spreading awareness on the importance of flu vaccinations in video ads and satellite media tours.

Through a partnership with TRC Healthcare, more than 5,000 community pharmacies in the Health Mart family now have access to quality pharmacy technician training solutions.

Two modern office buildings.

Executives said the merger of pharmacy software companies FDS and Amplicare was aimed at offering pharmacies more software solutions to empower pharmacists.

Teva's generic MoviPrep is available in dosage strengths of 100 g, 7.5 g, 2.691 g, 1.015 g, 5.9 g and 4.7 g.

An envelope with paper in it with a check mark.

Olanzapine tablets have a market value of $65 million, according to IQVIA data.

A man holding an FDA approved sign.

Zydus Cadila's generic Renvela is indicated to prevent hypocalcemia in chronic kidney disease patients who are on dialysis.

White pills spilling out of a bottle.

Ursodiol tablets had a market value of approximately $35 million, according to IQVIA June 2020 data.

Hy-Vee storefront.

Hy-Vee is encouraging families to find time to enjoy meals together with resources, solutions and giveaways during National Family Meals month in September.

Empty boardroom with chairs.

Sheri Edison, an experienced senior legal executive in the medical device and packaging industries, is Cardinal Health's new independent director.

August 2020

The words approved in caps and red letters.

Desonide lotion 0.05% had a market value of $7 million, and empagliflozin and linagliptin tablets, 10 mg/5 mg and 25 mg/5 mg, had a market value of $244 million for the 12 months ended June 2020.

A pharmacist with a hand on a patient's shoulder.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores' Sara Roszak's research, with co-author Stefanie Ferreri, demonstrates the value of community pharmacy in diabetes prevention and treatment.

A pharmacy stock room.

The National Community Pharmacists Association is urging House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders to investigate problems with mail-order prescription delivery that include damaged or missing medications.

CVS Pharmacy has installed time-delay safes in all 446 of its Massachusetts stores and added 50 new safe medication disposal units in select stores throughout the state.

A healthcare worker getting a vaccine ready.

A survey by the National Community Pharmacists Association found that 86% of community pharmacists plan to offer the COVID-19 vaccines when they hit the marketplace.

It is not easy keeping patients safe. Indeed, despite its importance, it is just one of a host of duties pharmacists are responsible for on a daily basis — a list that has only grown as the COVID-19 pandemic has worn on. 

A variety of pill bottles.

MedMinder’s smart pill dispenser has telemedicine capabilities to ensure patients receive their medication and take the correct dosage at the right time without leaving their home.

At its second annual conference, AmerisourceBergen Foundation nonprofit partners shared best practices on a range of topics including pandemic resilience, social justice and racial equality, and health and community improvement.

A gold star trophy.

The American Pharmacists Association Foundation’s 2020 Pinnacle Award showcases the impact pharmacists can make on quality medication use services.

An envelope with paper in it with a check mark.

Novartis’ Kesimpta can now be self-administered at home, offering an easier way for patients to administer the treatment for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis.

A pair of hands with gloves.

Three national pharmacy organizations are urging state governors to include community pharmacists in administering a COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available.

Schnucks storefront.

Schnucks Rewards customers now can opt for e-receipts to reduce contact during checkout amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the company said.

Kroger now offers COVID-19 testing by appointment across nine states.

Pharmacy shelves with various medications.

Ascend has started shipping its generic Jadenu Sprinkle, which is indicated for patients with iron overload, and announced several staff additions.

Camber's silodosin capsules provide a generic treatment for enlarged prostates.

Pharmacist putting a bandaid on patient's  arm

Flu shots are now available at Stop & Shop’s more than 250 pharmacy locations across the Northeast.

OptimizeRx is partnering with Higi to provide consumers with access to savings and life sciences patient engagement programs.

AstraZeneca’s Breztri Aerosphere offers a maintenance treatment for those with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

A healthcare worker giving test to a person in a car.

CVS Health expanded its COVID-19 testing program by deploying 77 additional test sites at select CVS Pharmacy drive-thru locations across Florida.

Mark Panzer, most recently Albertsons' senior vice president of pharmacy, health and wellness, is departing the company to pursue other interests, a company spokesperson said.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the American Pharmacists Association, and the National Community Pharmacists Association praised the Department of Health and Human Services for taking action to increase pharmacists’ role in providing childhood vaccinations. 

Generic tablets.

Biogen’s Tecfidera is indicated for the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis and is the first generic of any MS treatment in an oral solid dosage form.

A medicine cabinet with pill bottles.

A Delaware district court has decided that HEC Pharm's generic fingolimod will infringe the dosage regimen patent for Novartis' Gilenya.

The American Pharmacists Association has lodged its opposition to mandatory mail-order prescriptions in light of reports of disruption in the postal service’s delivery of medications.

A pharmacy stock room.

The Protonix brand had a market value of approximately $43 million for the last 12 months ending in June 2020, according to IQVIA.

A pharmacy stock room.

Flovent Diskus had a market value of $94 million for the 12 months ended June 2020, according to IQVIA.

A person typing on a computer keyboard.

CVS Health PBM clients and members will have access to Big Health's Daylight digital therapeutic for worry and anxiety.

The words approved in caps and red letters.

Eugia Pharma's generic Nolvadex provides a treatment for certain types of breast cancer in women and men.

An empty boardroom with chairs.

The American Society of Association Executives has a new roster of leaders, effective Sept. 1, which includes NACDS president and CEO Steve Anderson, who will serve as chair-elect/chair of the ASAE Research Foundation.

Hy-Vee storefront.

Hy-Vee KidsFit's free guide includes in-person, virtual and hybrid methods to help students prioritize healthy choices in school and at home.

A person checking medications in a stock room.

A new patented process for delivering specialty medicine will assure that AllianceRx Walgreens Prime patients receive their medicine delivered at the correct temperature, the company said.

A female pharmacist with a male patient.

The International Pharmaceutical Federation's new reference document provides information about what pharmacists can do to promote patient safety.

Nasal spray.

AstraZeneca’s Flumist vaccine will be available as soon as early August, with the drug maker delivering 25% more doses than in previous years.

Pills on top of money.

In a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, NACDS' Steve Anderson notes that the way states use data from prescription discount card transactions drive down Medicaid reimbursements for pharmacy.

A video meeting.

The National Community Pharmacists Association has switched its annual convention to a virtual meeting, to be held Oct. 18 to 19.

Camber’s generic Effexor is available in dosage strengths of 37.5 mg 75 mg, and 150 mg.

A pharmacist dispensing generic drugs.

Aurobindo's methocarbamol tablets are available in a dosage strength of 750 mg.

The words approved in caps and red letters.

Kite Pharma' s Tecartus is the first cell-based gene therapy approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of mantle cell lymphoma.

A pharmacist giving an immunization to person.

The Department of Health and Human Services' deal with Moderna, which calls for up to 100 million doses of a potential COVID-19 vaccine, also includes the ability to purchase an additional 400 million doses.

Tablets coming out of a vial.

K-Tab and potassium chloride extended-release tablets had a market value of approximately $346 million for the 12 months ended March 2020, according to IQVIA.

The American Pharmacists Association and Walmart are bringing free online training on opioid stewardship to all pharmacists and technicians in a program that contains 6.5 hours of training and education.

Camber is releasing generic Yaz in 3 mg/0.02 mg in three blister cards of 28 tablets.

A man holding an FDA approved sign.

Vardenafil hydrochloride tablets have a market value of roughly $35 million for the 12 months ended June 2020, according to IQVIA.

Ciprodex had a market value of approximately $453 million for the most recent 12 months ended June 2020, according to IQVIA.

White pill bottle against a blue background.

Zileuton extended-release tablets had an annual market value of approximately $40 million, according to IQVIA June 2020 data.

Supplylogix has added an Inventory Segmentation module to its Pinpoint Order software that automatically groups and ranks drug “families” based on the number of prescriptions dispensed over a 30-day period.

Bonum+ bundles telehealth, a COVID-19 risk assessment tool and a PPE purchasing tool through a secure mobile dashboard.

CVS Health is kicking off a new video and podcast series, dubbed “Healthy Conversations,” with an inaugural episode focusing on COVID-19.

White tablets spilling out of a vial.

Aurobindo's generic ProAmatine tablets provide a treatment for orthostatic hypotension.

A hand signing a document that another hand is holding.

Pfizer will provide contract manufacturing services at its McPherson, Kan., facility to produce and supply remdesivir for Gilead.

CVS exterior.

CVS Health and Salesforce are providing complimentary return to work and campus solutions through a data and workflow model that can be integrated into one centralized place.

A puzzle piece with a stick figure.

The Association for Accessible Medicines appointed Lisa Steelman to the role of vice president of state government affairs, which monitors legislation and regulation within the generic industry.

Vials of injectables.

J&J's $1 billion deal with HHS for 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, includes an additional 200 million doses under a subsequent agreement.

Schnucks storefront.

Schnucks is adding new grab-and-go options from six Black-owned restaurants, including Royally Baked, The Fattened Calf, Patty’s Cheesecake, Bold Spoon Creamery, Miss Piggies and Cathy’s Kitchen.

A look at how pharmacist-administered vaccinations play a critical role in fighting preventable diseases and offer an opportunity for the entire pharmacy staff to be involved.

Hands typing on a keyboard.

Surescripts' Specialty Medications Gateway and Electronic Prior Authorization services are intended to help specialty pharmacists get patients on therapy faster.

A hand holding a document and another hand signing it with a pen

Bausch Health will establish two separate companies, one that will focus on eye health, and a pharmaceutical company that will focus on gastroenterology, aesthetics/dermatology, neurology and international pharma.

The American Pharmacists Association has penned a letter to Americans urging simple measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.

UC Irvine's School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences will be the third such venture in the UC system and California’s first new public pharmacy school in nearly two decades.

ProCare Rx has named Doyle Jensen, a former executive at Innovation, as its new CEO.

Abbott's FreeStyle Libre 2 technology helps people manage their condition and also facilitates sharing health data with their doctors which is critical to achieving better outcomes and more efficient, safe telehealth visits.

Cardinal Health headquarters

For the fiscal year, Cardinal Health's operating loss was $4.1 billion. For fiscal 2020, diluted loss per share was $12.61. Fourth-quarter earnings per share were $2.23. 

An empty boardroom with chairs.

PQS is welcoming John Michael O’Brien, former senior advisor to the secretary for drug pricing reform at HHS to its board of directors.

Trump’s executive order will require the government to develop a list of essential medicines and medical supplies from U.S. companies to buy.

A female pharmacist with a female patient.

The J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Pharmacy Study found that nearly half (48%) of retail pharmacy customers have used at least one health- and wellness-oriented service provided by their pharmacy this year.

NACDS president and CEO Steve Anderson participated in a wide-ranging interview with Peter Cressy, director of the George Washington Leadership Institute of the George Washington Presidential Library at Mount Vernon.

Christie Smith will be the seventh independent director on Endo’s nine-member board.

An envelope with paper in it with a check mark.

Epidiolex is the only FDA-approved drug that contains a purified drug substance derived from cannabis.

CVS exterior.

CVS Health's Q2 revenue hit $65.3 billion, while its net income rose 54.6% to $3 billion, even as retail traffic and script fills were soft.

Bartell's storefront.

Bartell Drugs, in partnership with local radio station STAR 101.5 and World Vision, has adapted the School Tools program to reflect the changing needs of students and families during the pandemic.

Camber's generic Canasa suppositories treat mild to moderate ulcerative colitis.

Hy-Vee storefront.

Hy-Vee is making it easier for SNAP/EBT beneficiaries to pay for grocery curbside pickup orders by accepting the program's electronic benefits transfer cards as payment at the time of pickup.

The words approved in red and spelled out in capitals.

Aurobindo's newly approved Gleevac and Armidex generics provide treatment options for various types of cancer.

Pill bottles in a medicine cabinet.

Empagliflozin tablets, 10 mg and 25 mg had a market value of roughly $4.4 billion, according to IQVIA March 2020 data.

A puzzle piece featuring a person.

Nikhil Lalwani will serve as president and CEO of ANI, succeeding Patrick Walsh, who will remain chairman of the board.

A hand holding a generic pill bottle.

Lannett is launching Cediprof's levothyroxine sodium tablets, following both companies having prevailed in separate legal challenges by Cediprof's previous distributor.

Janssen's Spravato is the first and only approved medicine that has been shown to reduce depressive symptoms within 24 hours.

Generic pills and tablets in various colors.

Zydus Cadila's generic Rytary will be available in four dosage strengths to treat Parkinson's disease.

Pharma Logistics' new facility expands and combines the company’s previous operations in Mundelein and Libertyville, Ill.

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