PHARMACY

Sussman shifted to multiple posts at MinuteClinic, CVS Caremark

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. CVS Caremark has named Andrew Sussman, as its new president and COO of MinuteClinic and SVP, associate chief medical officer of CVS Caremark.

Sussman succeeds Chip Phillips, who served as president of MinuteClinic since May 2008. Phillips has accepted a new role at CVS Caremark as president of TheraCom, a CVS Caremark company that provides support to biotech and pharmaceutical manufacturers to help the commercialization of their specialty products. TheraCom also services patient communities.

“We’re thrilled to have Andy Sussman joining the MinuteClinic and CVS Caremark teams,” said Troyen Brennan, M.D., M.P.H., EVP and chief medical officer. “Andy has an outstanding background and expertise in both the clinical practice of medicine as well as health care system management. His experience in health systems, provider risk sharing and compensation, medical management, quality improvement, health care finance and integrated clinical network operations will be a tremendous asset as we continue to evolve the MinuteClinic retail healthcare model.”

In his new role, Sussman will be responsible for all clinical services and daily operations for MinuteClinic’s 500 locations across 25 states. He will also spearhead the continued development of MinuteClinic in retail health care services, which, since its inception in 2000, has generated more than 4 million patient visits.

Before joining CVS Caremark, Sussman was EVP, COO of UMass Memorial Medical Center, the teaching affiliate of UMass Medical School, and also served as an associate professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Before joining UMass Memorial in May 2004, Sussman served as chief medical officer of the Brigham and Women’s Physicians Organization. At Brigham and Women’s Hospital he also practiced primary care internal medicine and taught as an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

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Taro files patent infringement suit against three companies

BY Alaric DeArment

HAWTHORNE, N.Y. An Israeli generic drug maker has sued three other companies, alleging patent infringement.

Taro Pharmaceutical Industries announced Monday that it had filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey against Synerx Pharma, DPT Labs and Karalex Pharma, alleging infringement of U.S. Patent No. 7,560,445. The patent covers Taro’s Ovide (malathion) lotion in the 0.5% strength, a treatment for head lice.

Taro said the defendants’ generic versions of the drug infringed its patent, and it’s seeking injunctive relief and damages.

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News article calls Mylan’s quality control into question; company responds

BY Alaric DeArment

PITTSBURGH A news article published over the weekend calling generic drug maker Mylan’s manufacturing into question has drawn a response from the company.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Sunday that workers at the company’s Morgantown, W.Va., plant overrode drug quality controls required by the government by ignoring and deleting computer warnings of possible drug quality or equipment problems, based on a confidential internal report obtained by the newspaper’s reporters that called it a “pervasive” problem. Normally the warnings, known as “red screens,” require production to halt until a quality-control agent can investigate the matter.

The company responded by saying in a statement Monday that the Post-Gazette article was based on anonymous sources, improperly obtained documents and third-party commentary.

“Our customers and stakeholders can rest assured that whenever there is even the slightest departure from [a standard operating procedure], it will be dealt with immediately and effectively,” the company said in a statement. “This issue had no impact on the quality of our product.”

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