PHARMACY

AAM white paper highlights generics savings, hurdles

BY David Salazar

A recent white paper from the Association for Accessible Medicines highlights the savings from generics and biosimilars — and highlights needed policy to keep the savings rolling. “Ensuring the Future of Accessible Medicines in the U.S.: Avoiding Shortages & Ensuring Competition for America’s Patients” notes that generics prices are headed downward faster than ever, with the prices they settle at also marking historic lows.

The paper also notes that continued savings are dependent on a lack of artificial barriers to entry coming from branded drug makers, as well as a regulatory environment that doesn’t make low-margin products unprofitable. Among the barriers that AAM identified were drug makers “gaming” Food and Drug Administration regulations to delay a generic from hitting the market, as well as using patents for existing drugs to delay entry and a lack of clarity from the FDA with regard to complex generics.

AAM also noted that there are real challenges to staying in the generics markets, with state regulations, Medicaid’s generics penalty, unincentivized generic use counting among the issues that generics makers face as price deflation continues.

As a result, the organization uses the paper to call for the enactment of legislation to stop regulatory gamesmanship, sustained regulatory focus on approving complex generics, modifying the Medicaid generic penalty and increased use of generics for Medicare patients with low incomes, among others.

“Patient health and well-being depend on the uninterrupted availability of lower-cost generic and biosimilar medicines,” the report says. “Moreover, as patients live longer the importance of a robust and sustainable generic and biosimilar medicines industry becomes only that much more important. Policymakers must act quickly to ensure continued saving and market-based competition, as well as prevent shortages, for future availability of affordable medicines.”

 

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PHARMACY

XIL Consulting adds Ahold USA vet as president

BY David Salazar

XIL Consulting has named Raymond McCall as its president. McCall takes the helm of the Chesterfield, Mo.-based company — which develops strategies and offers price consulting for companies that manage drug benefits and access — from Ahold USA, where he was senior vice president of health and household.

Raymond McCall, XIL Consulting president

Raymond McCall

In his role at Ahold USA, McCall oversaw leadership strategies while creating and carrying out campaigns for its pharmacy, health and beauty care and household portfolios. Before joining Ahold USA, he was vice president of pharmacy operations for Albertsons. He also has held positions at CVS Pharmacy, Owen Healthcare and Kmart.

Leading XIL Consulting, the company said McCall would focus on helping it disrupt the drug market through its work with retail pharmacies, pharmacy benefits managers, specialty drug makers, wholesalers, generics makers and more.

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NACDS finds strong support for e-prescribing

BY David Salazar

Just a few days after lauding the introduction of a new Senate bill that would require controlled substances for Medicare Part D beneficiaries to be prescribed electronically, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores has found wide public support for the measure.

As the Arlington, Va.-based organization gears up for RxImpact Day on Capitol Hill, a national survey it commissioned from Morning Consult found 76% of respondents say they support rules that would require all prescriptions being handled electronically.

In a note on the NACDS website, president and CEO Steve Anderson highlighted that support crosses party lines, with nearly identical levels of support among Republicans and Democrats, as well as among self-identified liberals and conservatives. He noted that the survey allows NACDS to show legislators support by state and Congressional district. He also noted similar levels of support for another NACDS proposal – limiting the initial fill of an opioid prescription to a seven-day supply as a means of lowering addiction risk and the number of opioids in circulation.

“It often is said that ‘people’ and ‘data’ are the most essential components of effective advocacy,” Anderson wrote. “With record-breaking participation in the 2018 NACDS RxIMPACT Day on Capitol Hill, and with demonstrably strong and bipartisan support for our issue positions, we are well-positioned for a productive Washington, D.C. event next week.”

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