PHARMACY

Diplomat gains distribution rights for Eylea

BY Allison Cerra

FLINT, Mich. — Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy has received limited distribution rights for a neovascular age-related macular degeneration treatment.

The specialty pharmacy chain said it has received distribution of Eylea (aflibercept) injection from Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, the drug’s manufacturer. Macular degeneration is diagnosed as either nonvascular (dry) or vascular (wet) and is a leading cause of blindness in older adults. The vascular AMD usually leads to more serious vision loss, Diplomat said.

"Eylea represents an important new therapy in the treatment of AMD," Diplomat president and CEO Phil Hagerman said. "AMD is becoming more and more prevalent in Americans 60 years of age and older; Diplomat looks forward to providing services to help treat this growing population of patients to slow the progression of this disease."


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CVS Caremark looks to purchase Health Net’s stand-alone Medicare Part D Rx drug plan business

BY Antoinette Alexander

LOS ANGELES and WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase the stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan business from Health Net for approximately $160 million in cash.

The transaction is anticipated to close in the second quarter of 2012, subject to customary closing conditions and applicable regulatory approvals, including approval from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

According to CVS Caremark, the acquisition will add approximately 400,000 members to CVS Caremark’s Medicare Part D program, which served more than 3.4 million members in 2011.

“This acquisition furthers CVS Caremark’s position as a leader in Medicare Part D, one of the fastest growing segments of the PBM industry,” CVS Caremark stated in a statement sent to Drug Store News.

Health Net stated that it expects to realize approximately $140 million in net cash proceeds from the transaction, after the effect of freed-up capital, taxes and transaction- and transition-related costs.

Health Net will continue to provide prescription drug plans as part of its Medicare Advantage plan offerings.

“We believe this proposed transaction is in the best interests of our Medicare PDP members and our stockholders,” stated Jay Gellert, president and CEO of Health Net. “Our Medicare PDP members, who have received certain services from CVS Caremark for five years, will now be affiliated with one of the nation’s largest Medicare PDP sponsors.

“Given our ongoing relationship with CVS Caremark, we are confident that the transition of members will proceed smoothly with no disruption in services,” Gellert added.


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Perrigo buys CanAm Care

BY Alaric DeArment

ALLEGAN, Mich. — Drug maker Perrigo is buying a privately owned distributor of diabetes products, the company said Monday.

Perrigo announced the $36 million acquisition of Alpharetta, Ga.-based CanAm Care, whose assets include Dex4 hypoglycemia products, insulin delivery syringes and pen needles, lancing, wound care and compression stockings.

"This acquisition — alongside the store-brand glucose monitoring meters and strips powered by OnSync launched in 2011 with AgaMatrix — showcases our continued commitment to providing a comprehensive line of quality, affordable health care to the growing diabetes community," Perrigo chairman and CEO Joseph Papa said.


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