Canadian Pharmacists feel left out of marijuana legislation
OTTOWA, Ontario, Canada — The big news coming out of Canada Thursday was the introduction of a bill in the House of Commons whose passage would mean the legalization of recreational marijuana. And while the legislation does maintain a separate program for medical marijuana, a key addition that stakeholders wanted to see is missing, namely, the inclusion of pharmacists in medical marijuana dispensing.
The Canadian Pharmacists Association issued a statement Thursday expressing its disappointment in the legislation leaving pharmacists out of its language.
“CPhA believes that a frontline role for pharmacists in the management and dispensing of medical cannabis is in the best interest of patient safety,” the organization said. “Pharmacists have the necessary expertise to mitigate the potential risks associated with using medical cannabis, including harmful drug interactions, contraindications and potential addictive behavior. By not moving to ensure appropriate clinical oversight, CPhA believes that patient health will continue to be at risk under the current system.”
The organization pointed to an abacus poll from February 2016 that found 52% of Canadians saying their preferred method of medical marijuana distribution would be through a pharmacy. Another 23% listed pharmacy as the second-most preferred distribution method.
The Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation recognized that patients’ use of cannabis is different from recreational users. The Task Force also recognized that pharmacists can play an important role in the management and distribution of cannabis for medical use,” CPhA said. “CPhA believes that ensuring public health and safety must be the priority for the medical cannabis regime. Maintaining the status quo, without a role for pharmacist dispensing, runs contrary to international best practices and misses the mark to improve patient safety.”
Diplomat promotes Cretu to support EnvoyHealth
FLINT, Mich. — Diplomat Pharmacy is moving one of its executives to help support its Envoy Health Management business. Jennifer Cretu — most recently VP marketing and public relations — has been named SVP pharma services and marketing.
In the new role, Cretu will manage pharma services for EnvoyHealth, which offers comprehensive program solutions for manufacturers to help bring their medications to market. She will continue overseeing Diplomat’s corporate communications, marketing and public relations.
“We are excited to announce the expansion of Jennifer’s role,” Diplomat CEO and chairman Phil Hagerman said. “With a proven track record of developing innovative marketing strategies to drive Diplomat’s business objectives, she is the ideal leader as we grow and expand our EnvoyHealth services arm. Her new role represents a significant step for the development of our company. She joins a dynamic team that is providing complete solutions that meet the specialized needs of our customers.”
Cretu joined Diplomat in 2012, and has served in information technology roles, rising to VP information technology and marketing, managing operations and strategic planning. Before joining Diplomat, Cretu was a senior business manager of Walmart.com’s pharmacy and vision divisions. In that role, she oversaw the end-to-end business, managing products and services, customer experience and cross-functional partnerships. Before Walmart, she worked with HP to manage the growth of its worldwide OEM business.