CRN gives educational grant to Pharmacy Practice
WASHINGTON The CRN Foundation, an educational foundation formed by the Council for Responsible Nutrition, on Tuesday announced it has provided an educational grant to Pharmacy Practice, a sister publication of Drug Store News, to develop a continuing education module for pharmacists around the use of dietary supplements for the second year.
“Nearly 40% of consumers from the CRN Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements cite pharmacists as a reliable source of information about supplements — second only to doctors,” stated Judy Blatman, SVP, communications, CRN. “And since nurse practitioners are often on the front lines of communication with patients and they focus on providing comprehensive, personalized health education, both nurse practitioners and pharmacists are excellent audiences to educate about the role that dietary supplements play in maintaining overall health and wellness.”
The grant will allow retail pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to receive CE credits from two different courses via on-line webinars. Drug Store News markets the program to pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and pharmacy schools through a series of promotional emails, postcards and advertisements placed in the publication.
The first course — “Managing Joint and Bone Health and Dietary Supplements” — was held late last week with speaker Jason Theodosakis. The second course — “Women’s Health and Dietary Supplements” — will be held in November and will feature Tori Hudson as the educator.
Similar to last year, the educational grant will also allow for continuing education programs to appear in print — however, the audience for this year’s print CE lessons will be nurse practitioners, Blatman noted. Two in-print CE lessons will run in Retail Clinician, a Drug Store News publication that reaches nurse practitioners practicing in a retail settting , with the first CE lesson being an adaptation of the 2008 in-print lesson to pharmacists, “The Regulation of Dietary Supplements,” by Annette Dickinson. This lesson ran in the August 2009 issue of Retail Clinician and will be available on-line for one year.
Hudson will also adapt her pharmacists’ webinar lesson on women’s health and dietary supplements to an in-print version for nurse practitioners. This lesson is set to run in the November 2009 issue of Retail Clinician and will also be available on-line for one year. Nurse practitioners who complete the print program will receive continuing education credit corresponding to each lesson.
“We are pleased to again have the opportunity to receive this educational grant from CRN and work with such a well-respected organization,” stated Crystal Lennartz, director, continuing education, Drug Store News. “Both pharmacists and nurse practitioners are eager for information on health and nutrition, including dietary supplements, so these programs are a great fit to keep these healthcare professionals well-informed and well-educated on the important role that dietary supplements play in overall health and wellness.”
NPA testifies against illegal steroids
NEW YORK Here’s the breakdown: Two government officials representing the Food and Drug Administration and the Drug Enforcement Agency joined Travis Tygart of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (the body responsible for keeping performance-enhancing drugs out of U.S. Olympic athletes), Daniel Fabricant of the Natural Products Association and Richard Kingham, a litigator specialized in food/drug law, before a panel of senators — less to inform the Senate around the problem of steroids sold as dietary supplements, and more to be grilled by those senators as to why those products are actually on any market.
The senators were Sens. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and Arlen Specter, D-Pa., who played a sort of good cop/bad cop routine. Hatch was the good cop, at least as the dietary supplement industry goes, as he defended the legislation governing the regulation of dietary supplements that he helped draft some 15 years ago. Specter played the bad cop — questioning the regulatory priorities of the two governing bodies present, while raising the thought of adding more regulations to the FDA and/or DEA already-underutilized toolbox.
Following the hearing, dietary supplements emerged as the unwilling participants in all of this talk around performance enhancing supplements. You almost had to wonder why Fabricant was present, except to politely remind everyone that the dietary supplement manufacturers who actually distribute product through mass-channel retailers actually fought for (as in not against) such additional regulations as certified good manufacturing practices or mandated serious adverse event reports, and as such are not likely to field illegal products.
At stake in all of this is whether or not legitimate dietary supplement players ought to seek premarket approval, a condition that if ever really implemented, would decimate any future innovation in the almost $6 billion mass-channel business (according to the latest Nielsen Company figures). It’s also a condition that wouldn’t actually do much to pull those steroid drugs masquerading as supplements off the market, unless you expect those well-respected criminals to actually file an NSA (new supplement application) that contained ingredients that would not only land their consumers in the hospital, but would also land them in jail if ever actually discovered in the trunks of their cars.
The alternative, proposed by Hatch, is to place more resources behind enforcement of the laws on the book, as opposed to creating new laws that would more likely cripple legitimate manufacturers as actually inhibit outliers from selling steroids.
The Mentholatum Co. teams up with Ironman
TAMPA, Fla. The Mentholatum Co. on Friday announced its partnership with the Ironman brand on the launch of a Mentholatum Ironman pain relief product line.
“Partnering with Ironman sets apart our line and formulas, calling out strong, effective formulations in a category often confusing to consumers,” commented Todd Cantrell, director of the pain management division at Mentholatum. ”Consumers who see the Ironman brand on our products will know that they have been formulated to work on the sorest of muscles.”
“We are excited to be adding Mentholatum as an Ironman partner, as the formulas tested very well among our athlete audiences,” stated Bill Potts, VP marketing and business development for Ironman. “If the Mentholatum Ironman Pain Relief products work well enough on the discomfort in the muscles of Ironman athletes – who put in hundreds of miles weekly – they will work great on anyone else experiencing pain from other strenuous activities.”
The new topical analgesics will be available as a topical gel, a continuous spray or a roll-on application. Shipments begin in January, Mentholatum stated.