Watson promotes two SVPs
MORRISTOWN, N.J. — Generic drug maker Watson Pharmaceuticals has promoted two executives to EVP, the company said Wednesday.
The company gave the promotions to SVP, general counsel and secretary David Buchen and SVP and CFO R. Todd Joyce. Both will continue to report to CEO Paul Bisaro.
“These promotions not only recognize the substantial individual contributions David and Todd have made to Watson’s ongoing success, but also the significant achievements made by both in building the teams that support our company’s global growth,” Bisaro said.
Buchen began working for Watson in 1998, while Joyce began with the company in 1997.
Merck seeks FDA approval for Saflutan
WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. — The Food and Drug Administration has accepted an approval application from Merck for a drug to treat eye diseases, Merck said Wednesday.
Merck is seeking approval for Saflutan (tafluprost) ophthalmic solution, an investigational drug for relieving eye pressure in patients with glaucoma and ocular hypertension.
“Merck has been providing new therapies to help treat eye diseases for more than 50 years,” said Joseph Markoff, Merck global director for scientific affairs in ophthalmology. “The acceptance of the [new drug approval] submission for tafluprost is an important milestone in our effort to bring forward an additional therapeutic option for patients with primary, open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension.”
NCPA’s Jaeger responds to federal report identifying Medicare Part D overpayments
ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A report by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General found that beneficiary premiums in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program are higher than than they should be, due to overpayments to plan sponsors, including pharmacy benefit managers.
In response to this, the National Community Pharmacists Association’s EVP and CEO, Kathleen Jaeger, underscored the need for greater PBM transparency to assure patient access to their pharmacies of choice and healthcare services are preserved, calling the report a "wake-up call to Congress."
“When tolerated in Medicare or other health plans, overpayments to PBMs needlessly drive up healthcare costs," Jaeger said. "They also create artificial, inflated pressure that can lead employers and other plan sponsors to consider restricting patient access to their community pharmacist or even requiring the use of mail order when other cost-saving methods are available, such as increasing appropriate use of generic medicines. Community pharmacists lower costs for patients and health plans by consistently dispensing generic drugs more frequently than PBM-owned, mail-order pharmacies."