News Briefs


APhA analysis finds inequity in COVID-19 test to treat access 

covid-19 care

The American Pharmacists Association released the results of a new analysis showing that underserved and vulnerable communities do not have equitable access to care from COVID-19 test to treat sites, including lifesaving COVID-19 oral antivirals.   

As of May 6, 2022, when APhA conducted the analysis, there were slightly over 2,300 test to treat sites, yet there are more than 70,000 community pharmacies in the country. The analysis found that only 22% (513) of the test to treat sites are in the most vulnerable areas in the country as defined by the Social Vulnerability Index. Additionally, only 30% (< 700) of test to treat sites are in medically underserved areas of the U.S.

Although the Department of Health and Human Services has recognized the high level of training pharmacists receive by authorizing pharmacists to prescribe COVID-19 therapeutics, FDA’s emergency use authorizations for oral COVID-19 antivirals specifically exclude pharmacists as prescribers. As a result, the majority of pharmacies cannot serve as test to treat sites. These medications are being underutilized and sitting on pharmacy shelves, which unnecessarily increases healthcare costs and puts lives at risk, APhA said.

APhA said that it is urging the federal government to include our nation’s pharmacists as prescribers of oral COVID-19 antivirals to significantly increase equitable access to test to treat pharmacies by opening the door to communities that need it the most.

More information about APhA’s analysis can be found here.


Nautica turns eco-conscious with alcohol-free fragrance

Nautica Oceans Pacific Coast

Nautica has dropped a brand-new fragrance that is better for the planet.

Inspired by life on the water, Nautica Oceans Pacific Coast is designed for the man who wants to make eco-conscious purchases without having to sacrifice fragrance and grooming standards, the company said.

The clean and vegan eau de toilette is water-based, free of alcohol, and provides a non-drying and long-lasting scent. The fragrance comes in recyclable packaging, including a 25% PCR glass bottle with a removable pump, 90% PCR plastic cap and water-based ink to reduce environmental impact.

Created with fresh scents to capture the essence and energy of the Pacific Ocean, the fragrance’s sunlight zone contains wild coastal mint, white pepper and oyster leaf notes.

The twilight zone of the fragrance features stone pine, lavender and geranium scents, and the midnight zone has patchouli, Sulawesi, drift pinewood and tonka bean notes.

Available in an eau de toilette that retails for $39.99 and deodorizing body spray that retails for $9.99, Nautica Oceans Pacific Coast can be found at national retailers including Walgreens, Walmart and Amazon.


AAM elevates Craig Burton

craig burton

The Association for Accessible Medicines and its board of directors has promoted Craig Burton to senior vice president of policy and strategic alliances, effective May 30, 2022.

Burton also will become the executive director of the Biosimilars Council, which is the preeminent voice advocating in Washington and the states for policies to improve access to more affordable alternatives to expensive biologic medicines.

With more than 20 years of federal health policy experience, Burton has served in key roles at the center of a range of pressing healthcare debates. Prior to joining AAM in 2017, he was at Avalere Health, where he helped clients anticipate and plan for the impact of change stemming from legislative, regulatory or other market dynamics. He also established and directed the health policy and government relations efforts at two biopharmaceutical companies.

“The AAM board and I are pleased to elevate Craig to senior vice president, where he will continue his work to create and promote policy solutions to ensure that America’s patients have access to the safe, affordable and effective generic and biosimilar medicines that they depend on,” said Dan Leonard, AAM president and CEO. “Craig is nationally recognized as a leading expert in health policy, and his experience in both the executive and legislative branches of government makes him an invaluable advocate for our industry and the patients that it serves.”

Burton also served as deputy assistant secretary for legislation in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In this role, he advised the secretary, senior department leaders and White House officials on legislative strategy to achieve key priorities. He also served in the Senate, where he was health policy advisor to Senate majority leader Bill Frist, and as professional staff on the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

AAM's long-time executive vice president of policy and head of the Biosimilars Council, Christine Simmon, has just been named president and CEO of the Food and Drug Law Institute, the nonprofit membership organization that offers education, training, publications and professional engagement opportunities in the field of food and drug law.


Camber intros generic Atripla

a close up of a toy

Camber is offering efavirenz, emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate tablets.

The medication, which is a generic of Gilead's Atripla, is indicated as a complete regimen or in combination with other antiretroviral agents for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults and pediatric patients weighing at least 88 lbs.

Camber’s generic product is available in 600 mg, 200 mg and 300 mg 30-count bottles.


P&G launches Super Nature hair care products

super nature teaser

Procter & Gamble is debuting a brand-new hair care line for the natural personal care category.

Super Nature features products formulated with ingredients sourced from nature, including sustainably sourced potent aloe and craft plant-powered cleansers and conditioners to leave hair and the world better than how it was found, the company said.

Made without parabens, sulfates, dyes or mineral oil, the line is PETA-certified cruelty-free, made from 96% naturally derived formulas and is pH balanced.

Products that are part of the line include Gentle Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner, designed to cleanse hair without stripping, nourish and infuse moisture to the hair leaving it healthy, soft and protected from damage, the company said.

Safe for color-treated hair, Super Nature’s products are available exclusively at Costco.


FDA grants Sun Pharma approval for generic Pentasa

capsules generic teaser

Sun Pharma has received the Food and Drug Administration’s permission for mesalamine ER capsules in a dosage strength of 500 mg.

The medication is the generic of Ferring’s Pentasa and is indicated for the induction of remission and for the treatment of adult patients with mildly to moderately active ulcerative colitis.

Pentasa had a market value of roughly $213 million, according to IQVIA March 2022 data.