Amneal launches generic Entocort EC
Amneal Pharmaceuticals on Thursday introduced its generic Entocort EC (budesonide capsules). The product is indicated to treat Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
Amneal’s generic will be available in 3-mg dosage strength. Entocort EC and its generic equivalents had U.S. sales of roughly $187 million for the 12 months ended November 2017, according to IQVIA data.
Walmart unveils one-of-a-kind opioid disposal effort
Walmart is taking action to help fight the nation’s ongoing opioid epidemic.
The nation’s largest retailer is launching a first-of-its-kind opioid disposal solution — available at no cost — in its 4,7000 pharmacies nationwide, including those at Sam’s Club. Called DisposeRx, the product provides a virtually effortless way for patients to destroy leftover opioids. It contains ingredients that when emptied into the opioid pill bottle and combined with warm water, creates a biodegradable gel that can be thrown out safely in the trash. The solution will be provided in addition to ongoing counseling available to customers on proper opioid use when filling an opioid prescription at a Walmart pharmacy.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the National Institute of Drug Abuse, more than 65% of people misusing prescription opioids are getting them from family and friends, and personal prescriptions are one of the main sources of nonmedical opioid abuse.
Beginning immediately, customers filling any new Class II opioid prescription at Walmart pharmacies will receive a free DisposeRx packet and opioid safety information brochure when picking up their prescription. Patients with chronic Class II opioid prescriptions will be offered a free DisposeRx packet every six months. Existing pharmacy patients can also request a free DisposeRx packet at any time, including at the upcoming Walmart Wellness Day event on January 20 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time at all Walmart locations nationwide. Additionally, Sam’s Club patients can access Dispose Rx at their pharmacies.
“While this issue requires many resources to solve, we are confident this unique, easy-to-use disposal solution, DisposeRx, will make a meaningful impact on the lives of many,” said Marybeth Hays, executive VP of consumables and health and wellness at Walmart U.S. “Walmart is incredibly proud to fund this initiative that provides our patients with an opioid disposal solution they can access nationwide, at no cost.”
FDA approves Avion Pharmaceuticals’ Balcoltra
The Food and Drug Administration has approved Avion Pharmaceuticals’ Balcoltra oral contraceptive. The Atlanta-based maker of Prenate prescription prenatal vitamins said that this approval was its first for a new drug it had developed internally.
Balcoltra combines 0.1-mg levonorgestrel tablets, 20-mcg ethinyl estradiol tablets and 36.5-mg ferrous bisglycinate tablets — which the company said was a unique combination on the market.
“Avion is excited to offer our women’s health community this oral contraceptive formulation that fills a gap in the current branded options available to women,” Avion CEO Art Deas said. “The validity of data related to safety and efficacy for Balcoltra also provides another viable prescribing option for our prescribing community.”
The company said it plans to launch Balcoltra in the spring.
“Avion has always focused on creating a meaningful and long-term supporting role for our women’s healthcare prescribers,” Avion president Mike Sullivan said. “The Balcoltra approval and forthcoming launch is a monumental event for Avion, allowing us to solidify our commitment to the women’s healthcare community.”