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MinuteClinic opens first clinic in Southwest Virginia

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark’s MinuteClinic has opened its first clinic inside a CVS/pharmacy store in Southwest Virginia with five additional locations planned for September and October.

With the new opening, there are now 27 MinuteClinic locations in Virginia. The additional clinic locations slated to open in September and October will be in Hollins, Lynchburg, Radford, Roanoke and Salem.

"Since opening our first store-based clinic in Virginia in 2006, we have helped expand access to high-quality, convenient and affordable care to thousands of residents who have visited us at convenient CVS/pharmacy locations near where they live and work," stated Andrew Sussman, president of MinuteClinic and SVP/associate chief medical officer of CVS Caremark.  "We believe MinuteClinic can be part of the solution to Virginia’s efforts to broaden access to quality health services."

 

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Reports: FDA says carve-out bills ‘undermine trust’ in biosimilars

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — The Food and Drug Administration is concerned about bills in several state legislatures that seek to restrict pharmacists’ ability to dispense biosimilars, according to published reports.

Biopharma-Reporter.com quoted an FDA spokeswoman as saying "efforts to undermine trust in these products" were cause for worry and did not serve the interests of patients.

Earlier this week, the lower house of California’s General Assembly passed a bill, which had received support from biotech companies like Amgen and Genentech, that would require pharmacists to notify physicians and patients if they swap out a branded biotech drug for a biosimilar. However, the bill contained a sunset clause that means it’s only in effect through Jan. 1, 2017, and Gov. Jerry Brown has not indicated whether or not he will sign it.

Similar bills have failed in several states, like Illinois and Florida, while passing in a few others, notably Virginia and North Dakota.

 

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Reports: Aggressive tick species spreading through southern, northern states

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — An aggressive species of tick normally found in the South has been spreading into northern states as well, posing a risk to people and pets, according to published reports.

Wichita, Kan., ABC affiliate KAKE reported that the lone star tick, named for a white, star-like marking on its back, has been spreading into Kansas, while the McFarland, Wis., Thistle reported that they have been found in several counties in Wisconsin as well. Lone star ticks don’t spread Lyme disease, but their bite can cause temporary allergies to red meat, as well as infectious diseases like ehrlichiosis and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. In addition, while most ticks patiently wait on grass or other vegetation to latch on to passing humans or other animals, lone star ticks actively track and hunt their hosts.

According to research by IDEXX Labs, a Westbrook, Maine-based veterinary supplier, veterinarians have seen an increase in cases of ehrlichiosis, a bacterial infection, in dogs, particularly in southern states.

 

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