PHARMACY

Bayer faces law suit over possible link between Trasylol, premature death

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK Bayer faces a lawsuit in Canada alleging that one of its anti-bleeding drugs increases patients’ risk of premature death, filed on behalf of a woman in London, Ontario, who had a fatal heart attack in 2003 after surgery to repair a damaged heart valve.

The drug, Trasylol (aprotinin) is used during cardiac surgery to inhibit bleeding. Bayer took the drug off the market in several countries when a clinical trial found that the drug increased patients’ risk of dying by 53 percent, compared to other medications.

The company noted in its 2006 annual report that two observational studies found a possible correlation between use of the drug in open-heart surgery and severe renal dysfunction, heart attack and stroke.

Trasylol had global sales of $298 million in 2005, according to Bayer financial reports.

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CVS Caremark plans to open location in Tulsa area

BY Antoinette Alexander

TULSA, Okla. CVS Caremark is looking to enter the Tulsa market in 2009, according to a local news report.

The company currently has 34 pharmacy locations in the state, but none that operate in the Tulsa area. According to the report, the company will open two or three stores in that market.

According to the report, one of the stores will be located at the site of a former Bennigan’s restaurant at the northeast corner of 71st Street and Yale Avenue—one of the business intersections in south Tulsa. The current building will be torn down for construction of the pharmacy, which is expected to open in October.

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Humana expands MinuteClinic network for TRICARE customers

BY Antoinette Alexander

LOUISVILLE, Ky. Humana Military Healthcare Services, a subsidiary of Humana Inc., has added additional MinuteClinic locations for its TRICARE benefits customers.

Initially, MinuteClinic services were available to beneficiaries in select cities in Oklahoma and Texas beginning in October. Clinics are now available to beneficiaries in the following locations: Boca Raton/West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando and Tampa in Florida; Atlanta, Ga.; Columbia, Greenville/Spartanburg/Anderson, S.C.; and Knoxville and Nashville, Tenn.

“MinuteClinic has been a great addition to our provider network,” said Dave Baker, president of chief executive officer of HMHS. “We are pleased with the success of this relationship and the ability to expand this service to more beneficiaries in the South region.”

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