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CVS Caremark gets OK to open MinuteClinic locations in Rhode Island

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — Health officials have given CVS Caremark the green light to open seven MinuteClinic locations in Rhode Island with imposed conditions, the pharmacy retailer has confirmed.

“We are pleased that the Rhode Island Department of Health has approved the application of MinuteClinic to open seven retail clinics in Rhode Island. We are now in the process of reviewing the report and the conditions related to the approval,” CVS Caremark spokesperson Carolyn Castel said in a statement sent to Drug Store News.

While approving plans to open retail clinics in the state, health director Michael Fine did impose 22 conditions intended to address physician concerns that such clinics could fragment care and interfere with the physician-patient relationship, according to a report by the Providence Journal. However, Fine did note that there is no evidence of such damage elsewhere in the country, and he acknowledged that demand demonstrates a need by patients.

Most of the conditions simply formalize measures that MinuteClinic had already promised to adopt, such as referring patients who don’t have their own doctors to nearby primary care doctors who are accepting patients and providing reports on any treatments to a patient’s doctor. However, according to the Providence Journal reports that he did add a few new requirements, including —

  • For each MinuteClinic that cannot locate a primary care provider within a five-mile radius, CVS will pay $25,000 to the Rhode Island Physician’s Loan Replacement Fund, to help boost the availability of primary care doctors;
  • Increased uncompensated care. MinuteClinic had agreed to provide free care to patients of the Rhode Island Free Clinic. Fine expanded that to include free care for all patients who can document that they qualify for charity care at a hospital, community health center, community mental health center or free clinic.

 

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sefortenberry says:
May-20-2014 09:35 pm

Wow! I wish the local Mercedes dealership (not within a five-mile radius) would pay me $25,000 since I bought a Ford (within a five-mile radius). Free care . . . there is no free care. Someone, somewhere pays.

R.HAMMERLE says:
May-16-2014 08:01 am

Imagine a state imposing similar requirements on any other new business! 1. If you can't find a competitor within a five mile radius and refer your customers to them, you get to pay $ 25,000 to help the state recruit new competitors. 2. If other businesses have customers who can't pay their bills, you agree to take them.

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Suit to block approval of generic Copaxone dismissed

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — Teva Pharmaceutical on Wednesday was denied in its suit to block approval of Mylan’s and Sandoz’ generic Copaxone, a multiple sclerosis drug, 10 days before the patent on the medication expires, according to a Bloomberg report published Thursday morning

The court ruled that the suit had been filed prematurely and could be refiled at a later date, according to the report. 

According to the report, Teva is appealing a 2013 dismissal of Teva’s suits against Mylan and Sandoz for infringing patents covering Copaxone. That case is pending before the Supreme Court.

 

 

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AmerisourceBergen names Walgreens CEO Greg Wasson to board

BY Michael Johnsen

VALLEY FORGE, Pa. — AmerisourceBergen on Thursday announced that Gregory Wasson, president and CEO of Walgreens, has been elected to its board of directors, effective immediately. The election of Wasson expanded the company’s board of directors to 11 members. Wasson has not been appointed to serve on any committees of the board.

Walgreens was entitled to designate a director to the AmerisourceBergen board of directors as part of the strategic long-term relationship the company entered into with Walgreens and Alliance Boots in March of 2013. “We are very pleased to have Greg join the AmerisourceBergen board of directors,” stated Richard Gozon, chairman of the board of AmerisourceBergen. “His extensive healthcare experience, strategic vision, and commitment to working collaboratively to drive growth and shareholder value for both AmerisourceBergen and Walgreens, will make Greg a tremendous asset to the board.”

Wasson is currently the president and CEO of Walgreens, and has served on the Walgreens board of directors since 2009. A graduate of Purdue University’s School of Pharmacy, Wasson has served in a number of senior management and executive positions throughout his 33-year career with Walgreens, including president and COO of Walgreens from May 2007 to February 2009, EVP from October 2005 to May 2007, SVP from February 2004 to October 2005 and VP from October 2001 to February 2004. He was also president of Walgreens Health Services from March 2002 to May 2007. Wasson has served as a director of Alliance Boots since August 2012 and of Verizon Communications since March 2013.

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