PHARMACY

Rhode Island CVS/pharmacy locations collecting unused, expired medications

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. CVS/pharmacy announced plans to collect expired or unused medications from the public at two collection events in Rhode Island in April.

“This spring season is the perfect time for consumers to clean out their medicine cabinets to dispose of medications that have expired or are otherwise no longer being used,” stated Papatya Tankut, VP of pharmacy professional services at CVS/pharmacy. “By bringing these unwanted drugs to a CVS collection event in April, consumers will be helping to protect the environment. All medications collected at these events will be properly disposed of and destroyed.”

As the 40th anniversary of Earth Day approaches on April 22, the retailer will help consumers properly dispose of their unwanted medication on April 3 at the CVS store in Coventry and again on April 10 at the CVS store in Cranston.

The collection events will be held in the parking lot of each location and CVS pharmacists will staff an on-site Mobile Pharmacy Unit to identify and catalogue the returned drugs.

The events will be conducted with the support of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, the Rhode Island State Board of Pharmacy, and the Coventry and Cranston Police Departments. Local police departments will be present at both collection events to take possession of any controlled substances that are brought for disposal.

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FDA approves expanded use of Xifaxan

BY Alaric DeArment

SILVER SPRING, Md. The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new use for a drug made by Salix Pharmaceuticals, the FDA announced Wednesday.

The agency approved Salix’s Xifaxan (rifaximin) for treating hepatic encephalopathy, a deterioration in brain functioning in patients with liver disease that results from the liver’s no longer being able to clear toxins from the body.

The drug already had approval for treating traveler’s diarrhea.

“The approval of Xifaxan for this new indication provides an additional treatment optin for patients with liver disease,” FDA Division of Gastroenterology Products deputy director Joyce Korvick said in a statement. “Hepatic encephalopathy occurs commonly in patients with liver disease, and there are few effective treatments for this serious condition.”

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Teva gets tentative approval for argatroban

BY Alaric DeArment

JERUSALEM The Food and Drug Administration has given tentative approval to a generic anticoagulant by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Teva announced Thursday.

The FDA gave the authorization to the injected drug argatroban, a generic version of a GlaxoSmithKline drug for treating heparin-induced thrombocytopenia that is branded with the same name. The branded version of the drug has annual sales of around $137 million, according to IMS Health.

A tentative approval means that the generic version of the drug meets the conditions for full approval by the FDA, but it can’t be marketed yet because the patent has not expired.

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