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GPhA pushes for greater access to generics at TPP meeting

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — The Generic Pharmaceutical Association lobbied for greater access to generics at this week’s meeting of the chief negotiators of the Trans-Pacific Partnership in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, the association announced Wednesday.

"GPhA supports trade agreements that protect timely and cost-effective patient access to beneficial generic drugs and biosimilars, and that also respect the rights of innovators," stated Ralph Neas, GPhA president and CEO. "Importantly, trade agreements should not constrain job growth in the U.S. by blocking or delaying exports of generic drugs to foreign markets. Any final agreement should support the U.S.-based generic industry and open foreign markets for generic products." 

GPhA strongly objects to any provisions that could threaten competition including patent linkage and exclusivity periods for reference products that unnecessarily delay access to lower-cost generic medicines, Neas added.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership is part of a trade agreement that seeks to manage trade, promote growth and regionally integrate the economies of the Asia-Pacific region.

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Safeway, Target and Walgreens among retailers to form Retail Cyber Intelligence Sharing Center

BY Michael Johnsen

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Retail Industry Leaders Association, along with several of America's most recognized retail brands, on Wednesday launched the Retail Cyber Intelligence Sharing Center. 

The R-CISC is an independent organization, the centerpiece of which is a Retail Information Sharing and Analysis Center. Among those companies participating with and supportive of the R-CISC are American Eagle Outfitters, Gap, J. C. Penney, Lowe's Companies, Nike, Safeway, Target, VF Corp. and Walgreens.  

“We are highly focused on protecting our customers and maintaining their trust. That’s why we have joined the R-CISC and are committed to sharing best practices and information with our peers and other stakeholders in order to strengthen our collective defenses against potential threats,” stated Greg Wasson, president and CEO of Walgreens and vice chairman of RILA.

Through the R-CISC, retailers are sharing cyber threat information among themselves and, via analysts, with public and private stakeholders, such as the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Secret Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The R-CISC will also provide advanced training and education and research resources for retailers.

“Retailers place extremely high priority on finding solutions to combat cyber attacks and protect customers," stated Sandy Kennedy, president RILA. "In the face of persistent cyber criminals with increasingly sophisticated methods of attack, the R-CISC is a comprehensive resource for retailers to receive and share threat information, advance leading practices and develop research relevant to fighting cyber crimes.” 

In order to create a structure tailored to the needs of the retail industry, the R-CISC was developed with input from more than 50 of America’s largest retailers, and in consultation with key stakeholders including federal law enforcement, government agencies and subject matter experts.

“We have seen a sharp increase in the number of malicious actors attempting to access personal information or compromise the systems we all rely on, in the retail industry and elsewhere,” commented Phyllis Schneck, Deputy Under Secretary for Cybersecurity and Communications at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security National Protection and Programs Directorate. “We continue to work with the private sector to create shared situational awareness of potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities. The Retail Cyber Intelligence Sharing Center will further enhance DHS’s collaboration with this important sector of the American economy with information and resources that can help companies keep their networks and the information stored on them safe and secure.”

RILA established partnerships with many federal agencies through the formation of the R-CISC and has support from U.S. government agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Secret Service.

 

 

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Community Health Network expands its clinical partnership with Walgreens

BY Michael Johnsen

INDIANAPOLIS — The clinical collaboration between Community Health Network and Walgreens is rapidly expanding across central Indiana, Community Health Network announced recently. Seven additional Healthcare Clinics at select Walgreens sites are being integrated with Community Health Network to provide additional points of access for consumers who are looking for coordinated health care. 

“Healthcare systems are seeing the value of offering a retail connection for consumers as part of their delivery of care across the continuum," commented Alan London, VP strategic clinical partnerships, Walgreens. “As consumers continue to take more control of their healthcare decisions and shift toward cost and quality comparisons of providers, the collaboration between Walgreens and Community Health Network will offer another resource for finding the level of healthcare they need. For example, a consumer can be seen by a nurse practitioner at Walgreens for what appears to be a minor illness and then have the option to be referred to a Community physician specialist if more advanced treatments are needed. The process is comprehensive.”

“The healthcare industry is changing and that change is being driven by the needs of consumers,” stated Paul Wilson, senior medical director at Community Physician Network. “Consumers are looking closely at pricing and ease of access to quality health care. Our collaboration with Walgreens is helping us achieve our goal of being a high-value provider," he said. "We offer hundreds of quality physicians and innovative sites for inpatient and outpatient care and Walgreens is a very successful retail company with a great connection to consumers on a broad scale. Together, we can meet the healthcare needs of residents across Central Indiana.”

Each Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens location in the collaboration provides patients who need additional care access to a full continuum of Community Health Network providers and services, including primary or specialty physicians with Community Physician Network; Community MedCheck, imaging and lab services. 

Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens offers immediate treatment for minor illnesses and injuries and will also help Community Health Network patients manage the treatment of chronic diseases, such as hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol and asthma.

 

 

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