June 15, 2011

There are better ways to reduce expenses for Tricare beneficiaries than to restrict access to community pharmacy. What's more, Congress should adopt alternative cost-saving strategies, including utilizing local pharmacists. That was a key message in an op-ed co-authored by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the National Community Pharmacists Association and published June 13 in The Hill's Congress Blog.

May 31, 2011

The House of Representatives last week passed the FY2012 Defense Authorization bill by a vote of 322 to 96. The bill includes a small increase in the Tricare Prime fee, the American Society of Military Comptrollers noted in a statement, but caps future increases at no more than the cost-of-living adjustment.

May 25, 2011

The Healthcare Distribution Management Association on Wednesday honored Rep. Gene Green, D-Texas, with its Rx Safety and Healthcare Leadership Award.

May 24, 2011

CVS Caremark outlined on Tuesday at a consumer health engagement conference the results of a personalized consumer communications program designed to encourage patients to take their medications as doctors direct.

May 24, 2011

Reps. Aaron Schock, R-Ill., and Peter Welch, D-Vt., on Monday introduced legislation that would exempt community pharmacies with less than 10 locations from having to participate in Medicare competitive acquisition programs and pricing when it comes to the sale of blood-glucose meters and supplies.

May 19, 2011

Despite the promise of oral drugs for treating cancer, high costs and the burden of taking multiple medications drive 10% of patients prescribed the drugs not to fill their initial prescriptions, according to a new study published in the Journal of Oncology Practice and the American Journal of Managed Care.

April 29, 2011

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the National Community Pharmacists Association announced on Friday that they have issued a letter to Rep. Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., expressing pharmacy's support for H.R. 1092, the Military Retirees Health Care Protection Act, which would help preserve Tricare beneficiaries' access to pharmacy-based healthcare services.

April 15, 2011

CVS Caremark announced on Friday that it has agreed to pay $17.5 million, to be allocated among the federal government and 10 participating states, to resolve a civil complaint concerning how its CVS/pharmacy retail pharmacies submitted reimbursement claims in certain states for prescriptions filled for "dual eligible" patients who have coverage under both Medicaid and a third-party insurance plan.

April 13, 2011

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores said that it has signed on as a partner for a new public-private partnership, announced by the Department of Health and Human Services and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, that seeks to improve patient health and lower healthcare costs through the use of community-based care transition programs.

April 8, 2011

A Georgetown University Health Policy Institute study of Florida’s Medicaid Managed Care pilot program should raise doubts for states considering the use of for-profit managed care companies to reduce Medicaid costs, the National Community Pharmacists Association cautioned on Friday.

April 6, 2011

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced this week it would delay implementation of its proposed Medicare Part D long-term care “short-cycle” rule for one year.

March 29, 2011

Raising Medicare’s eligibility age from 65 to 67 years in 2014 would generate an estimated $7.6 billion in net savings to the federal government, but also would result in an estimated net increase of $5.6 billion in out-of-pocket costs for 65- and 66-year-olds, as well as $4.5 billion in employer retiree healthcare costs, according to a new Kaiser Family Foundation projection of the potential change suggested by several deficit-reduction plans.

March 24, 2011

In a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the National Community Pharmacists Association and 20 healthcare groups expressed their concerns over the proposed Medicare Part D long-term care “short cycle” rule.

March 9, 2011

A report by the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General found that beneficiary premiums in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program are higher than than they should be, due to overpayments to plan sponsors, including pharmacy benefit managers.

February 28, 2011

Two lobbying groups representing the nation's pharmacies are emphasizing how community pharmacies can help lower prescription drug costs, as well as the importance of maintaining the right of military families and veterans to choose where they fill their prescriptions through the Tricare program.

February 25, 2011

Give a man a doctor’s co-pay, and he is healthy for a day. Give him a health savings account, and that man becomes so much more vested in ensuring positive health outcomes that he may be healthy for a lifetime. Because in the long run, it’s cheaper.

February 25, 2011

In his 2011-2012 budget, New York governor Andrew Cuomo included a proposal to update New York’s Medicaid program. The announcement comes at the heels of New Jersey governor Chris Christie's motion to modernize the state's Medicaid plan.

February 24, 2011

Health savings accounts surpassed $10 billion at year-end 2010, according to a survey and the resulting research report conducted by Devenir, an investment firm that specializes in providing investment options for HSAs.

February 18, 2011

The Medicare Fraud Strike Force on Thursday charged 111 defendants in nine cities — including doctors, nurses and healthcare company owners and executives — for their alleged participation in Medicare fraud schemes involving more than $225 million in false billing. The operation marks the largest federal healthcare-fraud takedown.

February 15, 2011

Mark Merritt, the president and CEO of the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association, responded to a provision on the Pentagon's new budget proposal, which encourages Tricare members to use generic medications and mail-service pharmacies to save money.

February 10, 2011

Companion legislation, which seeks to change a provision in the healthcare-reform law and permit Americans to use their flexible spending accounts and health savings accounts to buy over-the-counter medications without a prescription, has the support of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores.

February 8, 2011

A group representing the nation’s pharmacy benefit managers said Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius should continue encouraging state Medicaid programs to explore affordable pharmacy solutions despite opposition from the independent drug store lobby.

February 3, 2011

The Department of Health and Human Services is encouraging state governments to save money with generic drugs.

January 28, 2011

Concerns that contracting rules affecting healthcare providers that service Tricare beneficiaries could extend to retail pharmacies has prompted the country’s largest chain pharmacy lobby to file a friend-of-the-court brief in a lawsuit over the regulations.