PHARMACY

Catamaran programs win awards

BY Alaric DeArment

LISLE, Ill. – A pharmacy benefit manager has received two awards for what it called "innovative healthcare tools."

Catamaran Corp. announced that it was named a 2012 Chicago Innovation Awards Top Ten Winner for its Enhanced Coordination of Benefits program, which identifies the payer of a claim while addressing quality of care and delivery of benefits for patients. It also received the Silver Honors for Healthcare Consumer Empowerment and Protection from healthcare accreditation organization URAC for its Real-Time Solutions to Collaborate and Improve Adherence initiative, which it developed with the University of Toledo.

“Catamaran’s Enhanced Coordination of Benefits program is the only offering on the market that is performed proactively rather than after a claim is processed and paid, saving dollars, resources and time,” Catamaran EVP research and innovation John Romza said. “It is just one example of our passion for creating leading-edge programs that save money and pave the way for a healthier, more productive society.”

 

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Par acquires rights to generic version of Seroquel XR

BY Alaric DeArment

WOODCLIFF LAKE, N.J. – Par Pharmaceutical Cos. has bought rights to a generic version of a drug used to treat bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

Par said it bought marketing and distribution rights to generic quetiapine fumarate extended-release tablets from Handa Pharmaceuticals, acquiring Handa’s regulatory approval application for the drug. The deal gives Par the right to market, sell and distribute the drug after it receives approval from the Food and Drug Administration and receive a share of the profits. Par itself has a license to market the drug starting in November 2016, under a deal with AstraZeneca.

The drug is a generic version of AstraZeneca’s Seroquel XR, and Handa considers itself the first company to file a complete application for the generic drug in the 50-mg, 150-mg, 200-mg and 300-mg strengths. If it is, then the drug will have 180 days in which to compete directly with AstraZeneca’s product, according to generic drug regulations.

Seroquel XR has annual sales of about $808 million, according to IMS Health. 

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CVS/pharmacy helping customers prepare for Hurricane Sandy

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — As Hurricane Sandy makes landfall today, CVS/pharmacy has announced that, while complying with any mandatory evacuation orders given by local officials, it is keeping its stores in affected areas open for as long as possible. CVS is also deploying generators throughout affected markets as needed to provide power to key store locations in the event of power outages.

CVS/pharmacy is also keeping stores stocked with storm preparedness items such as water, batteries, flashlights and other products to help in an emergency. Any stores that close due to the storm will reopen as soon as safely possible.

The company is also prepared to assist with storm recovery efforts in its communities and will keep in close contact with the American Red Cross to offer support in affected areas as needed once the storm passes.

Customers can access their prescription information at the Pharmacy section of CVS.com, with resources such as My Pharmacy, where patients can easily view all of their prescriptions and manage refills, and a Drug Information Center where they can ensure medications can be taken together and view descriptive images of each prescribed pill, the pharmacy retailer stated.  Prescription management services are also available at CVS/pharmacy’s mobile website, m.cvs.com, and through CVS/pharmacy’s iPhone and Android mobile apps.

When preparing for a hurricane or other serious weather event, CVS/pharmacy is offering customers the following tips:

  • Create a plan for evacuating and finding a safe destination;
  • Keep a written record of your current prescriptions with you at all times, or create an online record at CVS.com. This is especially important if you take multiple prescriptions;
  • In the event of an emergency when you are away from home, find a pharmacy nearby to fill necessary prescriptions. CVS/pharmacy can fill its customers’ prescriptions at any of its 7,400 locations nationwide; and
  • Create an emergency kit and make sure you have all essentials in case of power outages. CVS/pharmacy has the necessities for a hurricane kit including bottled water, masking tape and batteries.

 

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