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AmerisourceBergen’s U.S. Bioservices posts banner year

BY Michael Johnsen

US Bioservices, an independent specialty pharmacy and a part of AmerisourceBergen, on Wednesday announced that 2017 was a record breaking year for new business wins in three strategic areas – oncology, rare and orphan and specialty infusion. US Bioservices received access to 28 new products in 2017, including 10 oncology products and three rare and orphan therapies.

“Patients struggling with cancer and managing rare diseases require very specialized, clinically-coordinated care and service. We understand the critical expertise and commitment required to deliver solutions and support to patients who benefit from specialized therapies,” Kelly Ratliff, president of US Bioservices, said. “We were built … on providing high-acuity pharmacy and nursing support. Because we began as a home infusion pharmacy – providing infusion and nursing services to patients upon discharge from an acute care setting – we have a unique understanding of, and appreciation for, the level of care our patients need and deserve. We continue to align our investment and innovation strategies to ensure that we remain a premier partner in support of oncology and rare disease patient populations.”

Operating out of Frisco, Texas, US Bioservices leverages the breadth and depth of resources provided by AmerisourceBergen companies, including Lash Group for patient support services; ION Solutions and Oncology Support for their connections to community oncology providers and ICS and ASD Healthcare for rare and orphan logistics and distribution expertise.

US Bioservices supports AmerisourceBergen customers’ access to specialty products that are critical to improving outcomes and the patient experience across the continuum of care, from oncology practices to health system specialty pharmacies and community pharmacies.

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Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush to keynote NACDS PAC breakfast

BY Michael Johnsen

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores on Tuesday announced that former Florida Governor Jeb Bush will speak at the April 23 NACDS Political Action Committee (NACDS-PAC) Breakfast during the 2018 NACDS Annual Meeting in Palm Beach, Fla.

“Gov. Bush is an ideal guest for a meeting of NACDS, which values its role as a trade association at the intersection of business, policy and politics,” Steve Anderson, NACDS president and CEO, said. “As a leader in government, business and philanthropy, Gov. Bush has demonstrated a true appreciation for the inter-connection of issues ranging from healthcare, to education, to economic development. We are looking forward to hearing his perspective — particularly given NACDS’ focus on issues of value and importance to society.”

Among his pursuits outside of government, Gov. Bush and a business partner built a real estate development company that grew into the largest full-service commercial real estate company in South Florida. He has served as the co-chairman of the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy and as the chairman of the National Constitution Center. He co-authored “Profiles in Character,” a book profiling 14 of Florida’s civic heroes. He also is the co-author of “Immigration Wars: Forging an American Solution” (March 2013) and the author of “Reply All: A Governor’s Story, 1999 – 2007” (October 2015).

Gov. Bush was elected as the 43rd governor of the state of Florida in 1998, and was re-elected by a wide margin in 2002. During his two terms, Gov. Bush championed major reform of government, in areas ranging from healthcare and environmental protection to civil service and tax reform. His top priority was the overhaul of the state’s failing education system. In 2016, he was a Republican candidate for the presidency.

Gov. Bush currently serves as chairman of Dock Square Capital, a merchant bank headquartered in Miami. He maintains his passion for improving the quality of education for students across the country by serving as the chairman of the Foundation for Excellence in Education, a national nonprofit education reform organization he founded to transform education in America.

The bipartisan NACDS-PAC supports Congressional candidates who understand and help to advance pro-pharmacy and pro-patient policies. The NACDS-PAC Breakfast is part of the NACDS Chain Members and PAC Breakfast, during which NACDS-related business is conducted. The event is open to NACDS chain members and to NACDS-PAC contributors.

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Future of pharmacy in focus at NACDS Regional

BY Michael Johnsen

Celebrating 85 years since the inception of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the Regional Chain Conference held in Florida this past week shared the same singular focus of many NACDS conferences – a laser focus on the future prosperity of community pharmacy.

“I love it when the whole family gets together,” 2018 NACDS Regional Chain Conference chairman Dan Ferrara, vice president pharmacy operations for Wegmans Food Markets, said. “As our environment evolves, we must evolve with it. We must embrace the opportunity to make a positive impact in the lives of others through healthcare.”

“Pharmacy is beautifully positioned, as it always has been, to take care of changing shifts in the customer and in the marketplace,” NACDS chairman Alex Gourlay, co-COO Walgreens Boots Alliance, said. “We start, as pharmacy, with a natural advantage, being really close to where people live, where they work, and where they spend time in their communities. I have been in the industry for 40 years – 36 years as a pharmacist. I understand through personal experience and I have a huge passion for what pharmacies and pharmacists can bring, and continuing to build trust is a key part of our future.”

Gourlay noted the importance of front-end focus: “I will always speak from a pharmacy point of view, because I believe pharmacy is what gives all of us the unique purpose and differentiation in the marketplace. At the same time, all of the products, services and solutions that come from retail product manufacturers are mission critical.”

Gourlay also described the importance of NACDS’ work on issues including direct and indirect remuneration fees, pharmacy reimbursement topics and the opioid abuse epidemic.

And while the issues of today’s retail pharmacy are wholly different from those facing pharmacists 85 years ago, the common denominator of working toward the delivery of better healthcare remains constant.

“An anniversary is a great time to look at NACDS through the eyes of those who created it,” Steven Anderson, NACDS president and CEO, said. “If they were operating pharmacies today, I can imagine the founders of NACDS sitting in this room joining in our talks about modern-day policy – about the need to have access to the patient; about prescription-drug reimbursement challenges; about being blindsided by a DIR fee. … Here is an assumption that is right on. It is not sustainable for a pharmacy to be paid for prescription services, only to find out later that it must give back some of that payment. Addressing that in a meaningful, workable and effective way remains our goal, and NACDS has worked with our allies on a consistent basis on this issue.”

Anderson emphasized the importance of working together through NACDS on pharmacy and front-end issues alike.

“Whatever the issue, NACDS is totally committed to bringing about workable and successful solutions, that only can be achieved by true collaboration,” Anderson said.

The NACDS Regional Chain Conference brings together traditional drug and grocery chains with between four and 250 locations, and their supplier partners who help to meet consumers’ needs in health and wellness and throughout the store. This year’s theme of “Igniting Possibilities” tapped into the Conferences’ reputation as an ideal place for chains and suppliers to address issues, share insights, learn from effective strategies and conduct business.

 

 

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