April 17, 2012

Medicare Part D beneficiaries with cardiovascular conditions who had no financial assistance during the "doughnut hole" coverage gap were 57% more likely to discontinue their cardiovascular medications than those beneficiaries who had consistent drug coverage, according to a study conducted by researchers from Harvard University, Brigham and Women's Hospital and CVS Caremark.

April 13, 2012

The news that Take Care Clinics now are offering wellness services for Medicare enrollees clearly demonstrates that there’s an opportunity for retail clinics to fill gaps in care, and promote wellness and better patient outcomes.

April 12, 2012

Take Care Health Systems, which is owned by Walgreens, now is providing wellness services for Medicare enrollees at all Take Care Clinic locations throughout the country, the retail health clinic operator announced on Thursday.

April 9, 2012

How do you squeeze water from a stone? That seems to be the goal of the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in its long quest to cut prescription reimbursements for Medicaid patients by setting new, tighter payment caps for the community pharmacies that dispense those medicines.

April 4, 2012

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has submitted official comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regarding its proposed rule on Medicaid pharmacy reimbursement using the average manufacturer price model.

April 4, 2012

A group that claims a membership of more than 20,000 pharmacies nationwide has appointed a new member to its leadership team.

March 28, 2012

The National Community Pharmacists Association on Monday released the program for its 2012 Legislative Conference meeting, which will bring community pharmacists and some of Washington, D.C.’s most senior decision-makers together to discuss pressing healthcare and pharmacy issues.

March 27, 2012

The Supreme Court on Tuesday morning heard arguments on whether the individual mandate portion of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is constitutional.

March 26, 2012

The fourth annual National Association of Chain Drug Stores RxImpact Day on Capitol Hill wrapped up March 22 on a high note. With pharmacists and pharmacy students from around the country able to secure more than 350 meetings with members of the U.S. House and Senate and their staffs last week, most lawmakers who serve on congressional committees with jurisdiction on healthcare issues got to hear pharmacy’s position on prescription reimbursements, fair payment for pharmacy services and the proposed merger of pharmacy benefit management giants Express Scripts and Medco.

March 21, 2012

Industry-supported legislation designed to improve pharmacy benefits manager standards under the Medicare prescription drug program — standards that will further provide fair audits of and payments to pharmacies — was presented before the House of Representatives on Tuesday.

March 19, 2012

More than 5.1 million seniors and people with disabilities on Medicare saved billions on prescription drugs, thanks to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to Department of Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

February 29, 2012

The National Community Pharmacists Association last week sent a follow-up letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services asking the agency to revisit a decision last month that effectively requires some pharmacies to pay duplicative fee-for-service Medicare enrollment/revalidation fees, according to the association.

February 28, 2012

Lowering health costs will require a greater understanding of differences between two distinct groups of patients, according to a new study, which also noted a growing availability of specialty drugs for complex and chronic conditions outside the hospital.

February 27, 2012

Community pharmacy brings innovation to patient care

February 24, 2012

The Supreme Court has sent a lawsuit challenging cuts to California's Medicaid program back to a lower court.

February 21, 2012

Message to Congress: You’ve got to spend a little money to save a lot of it. Paying $100 million to the nation’s community pharmacists to provide comprehensive medication therapy management to more American seniors would save Medicare $1 billion or more. Spend $200 million and save $2 billion ... you get the picture.

February 17, 2012

The call to Congress to reject budget proposals that would increase co-pays for prescription medications at community pharmacies for Tricare patients is important as the war between the pharmacy and pharmacy benefit manager lobbies heats up.

February 15, 2012

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the National Community Pharmacists Association are urging Congress to reject budget proposals that would limit pharmacy choice for Tricare beneficiaries.

February 10, 2012

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores and California pharmacy groups have banded together to urge the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to prevent the implementation of a state plan amendment — proposed by the California Department of Health Care Services — which they say would place significant limitations on access to pharmacy care and services for the state’s Medi-Cal patients.

February 7, 2012

Two members of Congress are looking for co-sponsors for a bill that would strengthen the medication therapy management benefit in the Medicare prescription drug program.

January 30, 2012

Will the merger of Express Scripts and Medco go through? Not if pharmacy lobbyists can stop it. There’s nothing new about the fact that different industry groups connected with retail pharmacy or health care can hold strongly opposing views about what’s good or profitable for their own members. But for undisguised hostility and tit-for-tat charges and countercharges, nothing comes close to the long-running feud between independent pharmacy and the pharmacy benefits management industry.

January 30, 2012

Two groups representing the retail pharmacy industry are urging the federal government to provide guidance to the states on how to adjust Medicaid dispensing fees to determine pharmacy reimbursement.

January 30, 2012

Several Congress leaders last week penned a letter to the Department of Defense's Director of Tricare Management Activity warning of potential cost increases should the proposed merger between pharmacy benefit managers Express Scripts and Medco Health clear regulatory hurdles.

January 19, 2012

The National Community Pharmacists Association is calling for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to allow senior patients to enroll in a new Medicare Part D prescription drug plan via a special enrollment period, particularly if patients believe that "material misrepresentations" led them to sign up for a "preferred network" plan with inadequate pharmacy access.