PHARMACY

Amneal’s Zetia generic gets launch

BY David Salazar

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. — Amneal Pharmaceuticals on Thursday announced the introduction of its generic of Zetia (ezetimibe) tablets.

Amneal’s generic will be available in 10-mg dosage strength. The company is distributing the generic in 30-, 90- and 500-count bottle sizes, and has begun shipping the product from its Kentucky distribution center.

Zetia had annual U.S. sales of approximately $2.7 billion for the 12 months ended April 2017, according to QunitilesIMS data.

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Bartell Drugs, Kaiser Permanente open 13th CareClinic

BY David Salazar

SEATTLE — Another CareClinic by Kaiser Permanente has opened at Bartell Drugs, the health system announced Thursday. The clinic, which is now open to Gig Harbor and Key Peninsula residents, marks the 13th clinic that Bartell Drugs and Kaiser Permanente operate. 

“Patients come to our CareClinics for quality and convenient care,” said Kaiser Permanente clinician Michael Erickson, CareClinic chief. “We’ve proven that CareClinics live up to the promise of quickly diagnosing and treating common ailments. We get you in, taken care of and on your way for an affordable price.”

Kaiser Permanente said that visits cost $75 for patients without health coverage, or a patient can bill their insurance plan. Members of Kaiser Permanente have their visit information included in their electronic health record to allow for more coordinated care, and records can be shared with a patient’s primary care physician if they are non-members.

The new CareClinic will offer services seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Kaiser Permanente said it plans to add two more clinics by the end of the year at Bartell Drugs stores in Snoqualmie Ridge and Redmond Town Center.

“Bartell Drugs guests have told us they want the ability to get care and treatment as well as everyday necessities in one place,” Bartelll Drugs’ director of CareClinic operations, John Lewis said. “That’s why we’re so excited to continue our expansion in order to offer our services to more communities around the region.”

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CVS Health survey finds voters concerned about drug prices

BY David Salazar

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — In an attempt to gauge patients’ attitudes toward the cost of prescription drugs, CVS Health in April conducted a survey of registered voters, whose results the company released Thursday. The survey found that 88% of respondents are somewhat or very concerned about the high cost of prescription drugs.

Among those concerned about drug prices, a higher percentage of women than men (60% vs. 47%, respectively) are very concerned about the cost of prescription medication. And generationally, voters between 45 and 65 years old were more likely to report concern than younger respondents, as were voterswho take three or more prescription drugs.

CVS Health also found sizable support for increased competition and faster drug review times. 47% of respondents said there aren’t enough different prescription drugs available to treat their conditions, and 47% said there’s not enough competition in the marketplace. Sixty percent of voters 55 to 64 years old say there isn’t enough competition among drug makers.

The company noted that among its efforts to keep costs low for patients are direct negotiations with manufacturers through its CVS Caremark pharmacy benefits manager, offering negotiated discounts at point of sale, encouraging the use of generic drugs and biosimilars and its Reduced Rx program, which aims to help patients with high out-of-pocket costs afford their medicine. 

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