PHARMACY

Duquesne’s Mylan School of Pharmacy students meet with lawmakers on Capitol Hill

BY Michael Johnsen

PITTSBURGH — Nearly 160 students, faculty and staff from Duquesne University’s Mylan School of Pharmacy recently visited Capitol Hill to promote the role that pharmacists play in providing medication therapy management services, the university announced Tuesday.

Student pharmacists from the School of Pharmacy’s class of 2015 met with members from 37 U.S. House and Senate offices on Oct. 22 to demonstrate how pharmacist-provided medication therapy management services can improve patient healthcare outcomes and reduce healthcare costs.

“The trip was very successful,” stated Ben Andrick, president of the class of 2015. “The experience demonstrated that we do have a say and that we can have an impact on future practice."

The Mylan School of Pharmacy implemented an advocacy class trip for students in their second professional year as a graduation requirement for its Doctor of Pharmacy professional degree. In addition, with support provided by the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association, the student pharmacists participated in mock legislative visits to prepare for the Capitol Hill visit.

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores provided logistical and informational support for the Duquesne students’ visit to Capitol Hill. NACDS director of government affairs and grassroots programs Heidi Ecker delivered a presentation on grassroots advocacy to the students. And Tom O’Donnell, NACDS VP federal government affairs, hosted an overview and briefing of the issues just prior to the Congressional visits.

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PHARMACY

Reports: AMA supports legislation against ‘pay-for-delay’ deals

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — The American Medical Association has come out in favor of legislation to stop deals between branded and generic drug makers that critics blame for delaying entry of generics into the market, according to published reports.

Forbes reported that the AMA would support federal legislation to ban so-called "pay-for-delay" settlements. The AMA joins the Federal Trade Commission, which has strongly criticized the settlements

Typically, when a generic drug company wants to be the first to market a generic version of a drug, it will file for Food and Drug Administration approval for it before the branded drug has lost patent protection. This usually prompts a lawsuit from the branded drug company, and while the suits often go to trial, in many cases, they will result in a settlement that allows the generic drug maker to launch at a later date.

While the "pay" part of the deal may be monetary, it frequently consists of a promise on the part of the branded drug maker not to market an authorized generic — essentially the branded drug marketed at a discount under its generic name, usually by a third-party company — during the 180-day market exclusivity period to which generic companies are entitled if they are the first to win approval for a generic, when they have the sole right to compete against the branded version.

According to the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, a trade group, the settlements usually result in the generic drug becoming available ahead of patent expiration, and delaying entry beyond the expiration would be illegal.


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Towers Watson names Loblaw Companies preferred pharmacy for Towers Watson Canadian Rx Coalition

BY Michael Johnsen

TORONTO — Towers Watson on Tuesday announced that it has selected Loblaw Companies as the preferred pharmacy services provider for its Towers Watson Canadian Rx Coalition, a collaborative network of private sector drug plan sponsors. 

The arrangement with Loblaw is expected to improve employers’ ability to offer their employees access to a robust range of drug store health resources and support overall health and wellness needs while enabling long-term sustainability of their benefits programs in the face of rising costs. 

With approximately 500 pharmacies today in its network of banners, Loblaw is one of the largest full-service retail drug retailers operating in Canada, Towers Watson reported. Loblaw offers a variety of patient education programs and in-store dietitians to address the health and wellness needs of customers, and its stores are home to more than 100 medical clinics, 100 optical shops and 60 Goodlife Fitness facilities. 

 

 

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