Sales of durable medical equipment and the kind of home health products that help transition patient care from hospital settings to the home in the retail setting have only one direction to go. And that’s up.
Sales of all OTC medicines and natural supplements broke records in 2016, reaching $45.8 billion for the 52 weeks ended Dec. 25, 2016, according to IRI. That’s an additional $1.8 billion in sales volume compared with a year ago.
Increasingly, pharmacies are turning to automation as a way to increase efficiency and free up their pharmacists — employing everything from lower-cost, in-store automation to sophisticated robotics systems that help make central fill operations more efficient and reduce dispensing costs.
As 2016 drew to a close, the Food and Drug Administration gave a gift of sorts to drug makers looking to submit to the agency an application for approval of a biosimilar drug when it issued its final guidance, “Clinical Pharmacology Data to Support a Demonstration of Biosimilarity to a Reference Product.”