HEALTH

Calif. Senate passes pseudoephedrine bill, , receives opposition from CHPA

BY Michael Johnsen

SACRAMENTO, Calif. The California Senate on Tuesday voted 22-10 in favor of a bill that would reclassify pseudoephedrine, already sold behind-the-counter at pharmacy, as a prescription-only drug in an effort to further thwart the illicit manufacture of methamphetamine.

The bill, S.B. 484, will now be considered by the California Assembly.

In favor of the bill were many of the state’s law enforcement associations and organizations; opposed to the bill were the Consumer Healthcare Products Association and several retail pharmacies like Rite Aid.

“While CHPA strongly supports efforts to address the methamphetamine problem in this country, we believe that today’s vote by the California Senate serves as a well-intentioned but misguided approach,” CHPA released in a statement following the ruling. “This initiative will have little effect on the trafficking of methamphetamine in California but will force consumers suffering nasal congestion or allergies to spend time in their doctors’ offices and waiting rooms so a cursory examination can be administered and a prescription obtained.”

CHPA suggested there are other methods that will help stem methamphetamine production in the state that do no limit consumer access to OTC PSE, such as an electronic sales tracking system that could help prevent a practice known as “smurfing” — where people circumvent the maximum amount of PSE that can be sold legally by purchasing those products across several adjacent pharmacies.

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Abbott Nutrition rolls out three new flavors for its ZonePerfect Dark Chocolate lineup

BY Michael Johnsen

COLUMBUS, Ohio Abbott Nutrition on Tuesday announced the introduction of three new flavors to its ZonePerfect Dark Chocolate lineup, including dark chocolate caramel pecan, dark chocolate mocha and dark chocoloate cookies n’ creme.

“Building on the successful launch of ZonePerfect Dark Chocolate Nutrition Bars last year, Abbott is introducing three more delectable flavors for consumers to enjoy,” stated Monica Hysell, Abbott Nutrition general manager and division vice president, healthy living.

The bars will be featured in new packaging, which features clean lines and ingredient graphics. The new packaging will be rolled out to all ZonePerfect Nutrition Bar flavors over the coming months.

As part of the new flavor introduction, Abbott is donating a portion of proceeds from ZonePerfect Nutrition Bar purchases to the VH1 Save The Music Foundation for a total of $120,000, to help the Foundation restore music programs in public schools.

With every UPC code entered from a single bar, Abbott will donate $0.05 and for every multi-pack carton UPC code, $0.50 will be donated to the VH1 Save The Music Foundation.

The fundraising effort is part of the ZonePerfect brand’s “live.create.” campaign, which supports the discovery of music and art at festivals nationwide. The ZonePerfect brand will be sampling its new dark chocolate flavors and hosting a live concert event in conjunction with the VH1 Save The Music Foundation at its upcoming tour stop — Film Independent’s 2009 Los Angeles Film Festival from June 18 – 28.

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Select Jewel-Osco pharmacies to offer special services to support hospice care

BY Allison Cerra

FRANKLIN PARK, Ill. Jewel-Osco Pharmacy has formed a partnership with Elgin-based Passages Hospice Care that will empower hospice caregivers to focus more on the special needs of their patients’ care.

Under a new model of care, Passages caregivers will work closely with Jewel-Osco pharmacists — located in 15 stores throughout Northern and Central Illinois — who will provide special prescription and consultative services. As a result, hospice caregivers will have quick and convenient access to the products and professional expertise available at a typical hospital pharmacy.

“We are very excited about the potential benefits this new partnership will extend to our patients as well as their caregivers and family members. When a patient first enters hospice care, one of the challenges for caregivers and family members is accessing the special medications needed by their patient or loved one. We’re taking the guesswork out of this process,” said Matt Cross, regional manager of Managed Care, Jewel-Osco Pharmacy.

Hospice care is often reserved for critically and terminally-ill patients.

Jewel-Osco, a Supervalu company, operates more than 170 in-store pharmacies in Illinois, Iowa and Indiana. In addition to full-service prescription services, Jewel-Osco Pharmacy provides immunizations, diabetes care services and medication therapy management services, which are performed by specially trained Jewel-Osco pharmacists.

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