PHARMACY

N.D. governor signs PBM bill into law

BY Alaric DeArment

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The governor of North Dakota has signed into law a bill that would require pharmacy benefit managers to inform pharmacies about how reimbursement for generic prescription drugs is calculated under maximum allowable cost benchmarks and provide a more detailed appeals process to pharmacies to contest the MAC reimbursement caps that PBMs set up.

The bill, H.B. 1363, received unanimous support in both houses of the state’s legislature, and Gov. Jack Dalrymple signed it into law Monday.

The bill received praise from a trade group that represents independent retail pharmacies. North Dakota has more than 200 independent pharmacies, according to the trade group, the National Community Pharmacists Association.

"This legislation will help give pharmacists a greater window into a secretive reimbursement process and give pharmacies avenues for redress such as when payments aren’t updated when drug costs rise," NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey said.

 

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Navarro Discount Pharmacy celebrates opening of 33rd store

BY Antoinette Alexander

MIAMI — Navarro Discount Pharmacy has opened its 33rd store in Miami, which targets Hispanics from the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Cuba.

“Navarro spent more than $1 million on the new location including $500,000 on construction and an additional $500,000 on merchandise, fixtures and equipment,” stated Dania Farinas-Muñoz, the store manager.

The 10,000-square-foot store layout features new colors and enhanced signage in English and Spanish, a fragrance section with added light boxes, a cell phone, OTC and photo department, a new pastelito cafeteria, and more products in the refrigerated and freezer food and dairy section.

Navarro’s unique Pharmacy services for customers include a pediatric window for busy parents, compounding pharmacy services, a free diabetes club for adults and children with diabetes, a Mommy and Me Club, and free prescription delivery for all customers. During the month of April, new customers transferring four or more prescriptions will receive a $100 Navarro store credit used over a three-month period.

The new store will target Hispanics from the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Cuba with such specific products as hair care products, beer, nectar drinks, and more. Navarro’s signature products for Hispanics also available in the store include Café La Llave Expresso coffee and Fabuloso multi-purpose cleaner plus popular brands such as Valentini, El Sembrador and La Fe. Navarro’s new Vida Mia private label brand products in English and Spanish, are also available throughout the store in a variety of categories including baby, beauty, food, household, health and OTC featuring more than 1,000 SKUs.
 
The first 150 customers received a free Navarro reusable bag filled with products, along with free product samplings throughout the day. Free blood pressure and glucose screenings were administered by Palm Plaza Medical Centers on opening day, and concluded with raffles and a mini wine festival.

 

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Mission Pharmacal renews support for March of Dimes event

BY Alaric DeArment

SAN ANTONIO — Drug maker Mission Pharmacal has raised nearly $850,000 for the March of Dimes since it began supporting the group, the company said, marking its fourth year of support for the organization.

The organization was originally founded in 1938 by president Franklin D. Roosevelt to help fight polio, but shifted its focus to care for expectant mothers and babies after the polio epidemic ended. Mission said one key element of its support role was as a national sponsor of March for Babies, the group’s main fundraising event. Employees of the company work for the event by volunteering to staff tables and provide information, as well as by raising funding through more than 15,000 obstetrician-gynecologist offices. The events will mostly take place later this month and next month in hundreds of communities across the country.

"No other organization has played a bigger role in the health of America’s babies and families than the March of Dimes," Mission VP marketing Natalie Sirjuesingh said. "More than 4 million babies were born in the United States, and the March of Dimes helped each and every one through 75 years of research, education, vaccines and breakthroughs."

Mission said its employees would staff information booths at March for Babies walks in San Antonio, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, New York, Durham, N.C., Newtown, Pa., and Davie, Fla., while also providing information about products like the CitraNatal line of prenatal vitamins and Dr. Smith’s Diaper Rash ointment.

 

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