PHARMACY

Bristol-Myers Squibb to acquire ZymoGenetics

BY Alaric DeArment

SEATTLE Bristol-Myers Squibb will acquire Seattle-based biotech ZymoGenetics, Bristol said Wednesday.

 

The New York-based drug maker will acquire ZymoGenetics for $885 million, or $9.75 per share. The boards of both companies approved the deal unanimously.

 

 

The buyout gives Bristol ownership of Recothrom, used to control bleeding during surgical procedures, pegylated-interferon lambda, an investigational treatment for hepatitis C in mid-stage clinical trials, and IL-21, a treatment for melanoma also in mid-stage trials.

 

 

“The acquisition of ZymoGenetics brings us full ownership of a promising investigational biologic that strengthens our very diversified hepatitis C portfolio,” Bristol CEO Lamberto Andreotti said. “Building on our leadership in virology, we are developing a strong portfolio to help patients with hepatitis C.”

 

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Kerr Drug kicks off flu shot campaign

BY Allison Cerra

RALEIGH , N.C. Regional pharmacy chain Kerr Drug is kicking off its immunization program early this year to meet the demand for flu shots.

Customers ages 14 years and older now can receive the 2010-2011 flu vaccine by Kerr Drug’s specially trained immunizing pharmacists, no appointment necessary. No payment is required by those with Medicare Part B, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, Blue Cross Federal, NC State Health Plan and Humana Gold Choice. For all others, flu shots cost $30 each.

“People only need to get one flu shot this year because the 2010-2011 flu vaccine will protect against the H1N1 as well as two other types of influenza expected to be seen during the season,” said Debbie Pruss, a Kerr Drug pharmacist in Raleigh’s North Hills store. “We encourage everyone to follow the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s] new recommendations for flu vaccines. With immunizations available during almost all operating hours, it has never been easier to get a flu shot.”

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Two FastCare clinics to open in Idaho Walmart stores

BY Antoinette Alexander

POCATELLO, Idaho Portneuf Medical Center has teamed up with Bellin Health FastCare to operate two retail clinics in Walmart stores in Pocatello and Blackfoot, Idaho, according to a report by the Idaho State Journal.

 

The partnership, effective as of Sept. 1, will offer treatment for such acute ailments as sore throats, pink eye and allergies. Next month, another FastCare is slated to open in a Walmart in Peru, Ill.

 

 

This marks FastCare’s first clinics within Walmart. In an interview with Drug Store News in August, Ken Berndt, director of FastCare, stated that, at that time, FastCare had 38 clinics either built or under construction. Over the next 12 months, it plans add between 40 and 50 clinics. Bellin Health Systems established the FastCare brand of retail health clinics in 2006.

 

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