PHARMACY

Prasco launches authorized generic blood-pressure drug

BY Alaric DeArment

CINCINNATI — Prasco Labs has launched an authorized generic version of a blood-pressure drug made by Shionogi, the company said.

Prasco announced the launched of nisoldipine extended-release tablets in the 8.5-mg, 17-mg and 34-mg strengths.

The drug is an authorized generic version of Shionogi’s Sular. Authorized generics are branded drugs marketed under their generic names at reduced prices, usually under a partnership between the branded drug’s manufacturer and an outside company.


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PHARMACY

NCPA addresses pharmacy crime issue with new Protect Your Pharmacy Now! program resources

BY Allison Cerra

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Community Pharmacists Association plans to provide its members with new resources to enhance pharmacy safety following the debut of a news segment that highlighted the growing frequency of pharmacy crime.

NCPA announced it currently is rolling out the Protect Your Pharmacy Now! toolkit to its members — part of a program with the same name — which contains safety and security tips and checklists to help pharmacies assess their current security needs. The kit also includes discounts NCPA has secured for employee background screenings, narcotics safes, surveillance systems, cameras, alarms and other theft-deterrent products to provide a turn-key resource for pharmacy operators, the association said. What’s more, NCPA members also will receive posters and window clings to serve reminders to employees, customers and drug seekers that robbing a pharmacy is a federal offense and carries with it severe penalties.

The toolkit release follows the airing of ABC World News’ "Pharmacy Robberies Increase" segment on April 5, which cited Drug Enforcement Administration statistics that robberies have increased 82% from 2006 to 2011, with 3,535 pharmacies having been robbed during that period. The report also showed images of robberies in progress from pharmacy security cameras and an interview with an independent pharmacy owner Bruce Goodarzi of Rockville Pharmacy in Rockville, Md.

"We applaud ABC News for highlighting what we believe is a growing public health concern," NCPA president Lonny Wilson said. "Pharmacists in all retail practice settings can benefit from learning more about how they can better protect themselves, their employees, and patients. The owners and operators of regional chains and single stores can implement practices immediately to better secure their businesses and to better prepare their employees how to respond in the event of a robbery."

Protect Your Pharmacy Week is recognized recognized April 16 to 20, NCPA noted.


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PHARMACY

Rite Aid offers Prescription Advisor reports

BY Alaric DeArment

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid is offering personalized reports designed to increase medication adherence, the company said Tuesday.

The retail pharmacy chain announced the availability of Rite Care Prescription Advisor reports to show whether patients are taking prescribed medications as prescribed. Centered around consultations with pharmacists, the reports show a compliance score for each prescribed medication in the form of an easy-to-read line graph. Scores also are calculated and graphed across multiple medications used to treat the same or related conditions and combined for an overall score.

Participation in the program is optional, and those who choose to take part will receive a complete report, the company said. But Rite Aid said its pharmacists already were using the reports in their day-to-day interactions with patients. The company also is promoting the program in newspaper circulars and by including a snapshot of patients’ report on their private prescription information and a suggestion that they speak with the pharmacist about the program’s details.

"We’re witnessing a new era of patient care that is more effectively utilizing community pharmacists to ensure that medications are taken as prescribed, which can lead to better patient outcomes and lower overall healthcare costs," Rite Aid EVP pharmacy Robert Thompson said. "At Rite Aid, we believe face-to-face counseling is critical to improving therapeutic outcomes. The Rite Care Prescription Advisor is a new tool designed to do just that by facilitating meaningful face-to-face counseling and enhancing the pharmacist-patient relationship."


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