February 19, 2013

Two-hundred-ninety billion dollars. That’s the number often thrown around when health experts talk about what medication nonadherence costs patients, insurers, health plan payers and the U.S. economy every year. And of course, dollar estimates say nothing about the impact that nonadherence has on patients and their families in higher chronic and acute disease rates, reduced quality of life and shortened lifespans.

So the failure by patients to take their meds as prescribed is a big deal. And it’s gotten a lot of attention from payers in the last couple of years because it’s one of the most obvious levers to pull as public and private health plan sponsors struggle to get a grip on the astronomical and still-expanding cost of health care in the United States.

February 19, 2013

A new bill in Florida's state legislature would allow pharmacists to substitute biosimilars for branded biotech drugs, according to published reports.

February 19, 2013

Weis Markets promoted Rick Seipp to VP pharmacy.

February 15, 2013

Eighty-eight members of the House of Representatives fired off a letter Monday to postmaster general and CEO of the U.S. Postal Service Patrick Donahoe urging the agency not to eliminate Saturday delivery of mail, saying it would impede the ability of people who depend on mail-order pharmacies to receive their medications.

It's no secret that the retail pharmacy industry and pharmacy benefit managers don't always see eye-to-eye, with the latter being the main provider of mail-order pharmacy services in the country and often touting them as an alternative to going to the drug store, while the former emphasize the face-to-face interaction with pharmacists not usually possible with mail-order. But between the back-and-forth, millions of patients still depend on mail order pharmacy, and the cost effectiveness that mail-order pharmacies frequently promote themselves as offering could be at risk if they must use more expensive delivery methods.

February 15, 2013

A smoking cessation program developed by the University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy will be deployed through Safeway pharmacies, the university announced. As part of the program, Safeway pharmacists will receive special training in counseling techniques.

It's one of the first partnerships of its kind and another example of how community pharmacy will be stepping into a more preventive healthcare role. You can expect to see more types of these smoking cessation programs along with other proactive health interventions tackling weight loss and encouraging healthier behaviors.

February 14, 2013

Safeway pharmacists will use a program developed by the University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy to help people quit smoking, under a partnership with the supermarket operator announced by the university.

February 13, 2013

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores made its voice heard before the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on the role of pharmacists in influenza vaccination, the retail pharmacy lobbying group said Wednesday.

February 13, 2013

The National Community Pharmacists Association on Wednesday announced its federal and state legislative priorities with the release of the Independent Community Pharmacy Checklist.

February 12, 2013

The National Community Pharmacists Association announced it will hold its 45th annual Legislative Conference May 7 to 8 in Washington, D.C.

February 11, 2013

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has announced the winners of a competition it sponsored to increase awareness and use of evidence-based healthcare tools in retail health settings, the government agency said.

February 11, 2013

Bartell Drugs has introduced PharmaSmart blood pressure testing kiosks at all 58 of its stores, the regional retail pharmacy chain said Monday.

February 11, 2013

Progressive business media brand Fast Company named Walgreens as one of its top 10 healthcare companies for 2013 "for redefining the role of the pharmacy."

February 8, 2013

An annual event at the Virginia state General Assembly drew several students from a local pharmacy school.

February 7, 2013

Cardinal Health announced it is providing free, downloadable materials to help community pharmacists educate patients about effective strategies for preventing cardiovascular disease.

February 7, 2013

CVS Caremark has announced the extension of its Pharmacy Advisor program to cover an additional five chronic conditions, including asthma, breast cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, depression and osteoporosis.

February 7, 2013

Kerr Drug will use its partnership with PDX and ScriptPro to increase pharmacy productivity by expanding its central fill model, the regional pharmacy chain said.

February 7, 2013

Researchers in Canada found that pharmacists who call their patients after a prescription has been filled can help reduce and manage adverse drug reactions for those patients.

February 7, 2013

The team of pharmacists at Rexall Pharma Plus administered 190,000 of the more than 200,000 flu shots provided by pharmacists in Ontario this flu season, the Canadian retailer announced.

February 7, 2013

A survey of community pharmacists suggests that "preferred pharmacy" Medicare Part D drug benefit plans may pose challenges for seniors in rural communities.

February 5, 2013

CueScript on Tuesday launched an innovative platform that delivers on-demand prescription-specific videos and other value-added services designed to engage patients, improve health literacy and improve medication adherence.

February 5, 2013

Good, but it could be better.

I’m talking about the results of a nationwide survey of Americans who were vaccinated against influenza for the 2012-2013 flu season. Based on an online poll of nearly 1,100 adults in mid-January, researchers for Ipsos Public Affairs found a solid majority of Americans still rely on their family physician for their flu shots, but that retail pharmacies and walk-in clinics are making significant progress in their campaign to shift the center of gravity for immunizations away from the doctor’s office.

February 4, 2013

Pharmacy groups are advocating that Congress expand the role of pharmacists in new healthcare delivery models.

February 4, 2013

A university research project to look at the potential effects on patient health of incorporating medication management strategies into existing care teams has won a grant from the National Association of Chain Drug Stores' philanthropic arm.

February 4, 2013

To put Walgreens president and CEO Greg Wasson's speech at the National Association of Chain Drug Stores' Regional Chain Conference on Monday into perspective, one may consider that pharmacists today are the leading providers of immunizations and vaccinations, whereas five years ago, they weren't involved at all.