PHARMACY

Blink Health partners with Blue Eagle Health to offer generics at low prices

BY Sandra Levy

Blink Health, an e-commerce platform is partnering with Blue Eagle Health, a new pharmacy benefit administrator to offer patients low prices for generic prescriptions.

Through Blue Eagle, Blink Health said it is able to offer its pharmacy partners complete transparency into how much they will be paid for every prescription.

Blink Health said it negotiates directly with prescription medication suppliers on behalf of patients and uses technology to bypass intermediaries, known as pharmacy benefit managers. Patients purchase their medications on Blink’s website or app and pick up their prescriptions at local pharmacies. Founded in 2014, Blink Health is available to anyone with no vouchers, coupons or membership fees.

“When we started Blink Health, we focused on providing patients with lower costs and transparency before they got to the pharmacy counter. The pharmacy is the only place in retail where patients don’t know the price of a product until they get to the register,” Blink Health CEO Geoffrey Chaiken said.  “What we didn’t realize is that pharmacies don’t know what they are going to get paid until a month after they fill a script. We’ve solved this problem and created a win-win for both consumers and pharmacies.”

“We decided to partner with the Blink Health team because of a shared vision to bring transparency to our pharmacy retail partners,” Blue Eagle Health president Tom Luft said. “Blue Eagle Health eliminates the opaque PBM industry practices of clawbacks, administrative fees and gag orders. We’re excited to work with our retail partners to target patients who increasingly look to purchase their goods and services online.”

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PHARMACY

McKesson ideaShare 2018 highlights big opportunities for independents

BY Sandra Levy

McKesson ideaShare 2018, held in Las Vegas through July 12, has focused on myriad opportunities for community pharmacists to improve their knowledge, performance and profitability while networking with industry experts.

This year’s conference featured focused learning, interactive exhibits, workshops and networking with peers to provide pharmacy owners with the expertise and tools to maximize their clinical, operational and financial performance.

“McKesson continues to invest in clinical solutions, revenue generating tools and technology designed to help independent pharmacies provide quality care for their patients, while also improving their business performance,” said McKesson U.S. Pharmaceutical and Specialty Health president Nick Loporcaro.

“Our goal is for Health Mart pharmacies to be top of mind for their patients when they think about wellness and quality local health care. This is how they will continue to compete and thrive,” said Health Mart and McKesson Retail Solutions president Chris Dimos.

One of the many highlights of the annual meeting was introducing attendees to Health Mart Atlas, its newly launched PASO partnership with the American Pharmacy Cooperative Inc., or APCI, which focuses on making managed care easier for community pharmacy by helping to identify opportunities that are right for their needs, and giving pharmacies the time to focus on those opportunities.

The meeting also showcased myHealthMart, designed to help Health Mart pharmacies improve performance and patient care. myHealthMart integrates the digital tools available, including the Operations Toolkit.

Health Mart also unveiled the next generation of the Health Mart Marketing Hub. First launched in 2013, the Health Mart Marketing Hub has been revamped based on customer feedback to allow for easier searching, faster customization and expanded offerings. The new site will feature greater flexibility, giving pharmacies access to hundreds of professionally-designed marketing materials, and expert support.

Health Mart introduced new packaging for its private label products,  as well as expanded product categories, such as vitamins, eye and ear, and upper respiratory. Health Mart is also building new planogram solutions and increasing the frequency of private label promotions, as well as enhancing the new item auto-ship promotion platform.

A children’s vitamin support program which helps pharmacies build relationships with families in their community and expand services as a healthcare provider made its debut. Vitamins will be ordered through McKesson Connect and marketing materials are available through the Marketing Hub.

To help Health Mart pharmacies maintain a year-round vaccination offering and create an additional revenue stream, Health Mart announced it has partnered with PrescribeWellness to provide expanded access to the VaccineComplete program and collaborative practice agreements.

Finally, Health Mart also introduced new capabilities for its Physician Outreach Program. New drug category information will enable pharmacies to see the top categories prescribed by local prescribers improving their ability to target physicians based on the type of patients they see and the drugs they prescribe, the comapny said.

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Dr. Reddy’s introduces generic Plaquenil tablets

BY Sandra Levy

Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories has received the OK from the Food and Drug Administration for a generic version of Concordia’s Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets) in a 200-mg dosage strength.

The product is indicated for the treatment of uncomplicated malaria due to P. falciparum, P. malariae, P. ovale and P. vivax; the prophylaxis of malaria in geographic areas where chloroquine resistance is not reported; the treatment of chronic discoid lupus erythematosus and systemic lupus erythematosus in adults; and the treatment of acute and chronic rheumatoid arthritis in adults.

Dr. Reddy’s hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets are available in 200 mg tablets in the bottle count sizes of 100 and 500.

The product’s market size was approximately $215 million for the 12 months ended May 2018, according to IQVIA data.

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