naloxone education
PHARMACY

CVS Pharmacy locations now offering non-prescription naloxone in Idaho

BY Michael Johnsen

WOONSOCKET, R.I. – CVS Health announced Friday that the opioid overdose-reversal medication naloxone is now available without a prescription at CVS Pharmacy locations in Idaho. Under prescriptive authority allowed by the state, CVS Pharmacists will expand access to the medication.  

"Naloxone is a safe and effective antidote to opioid overdoses and we can help save lives by increasing access to this medication in our Idaho pharmacies by the use of prescriptive authority for patients without a prescription," stated Tom Davis,VP pharmacy professional practices at CVS Pharmacy. "We are dedicated to helping the communities we serve address and prevent drug abuse and we are expanding access to naloxone to give more people a chance to get the help they need for recovery."

In addition to Idaho, CVS Pharmacy locations in 30 other states can dispense naloxone to patients without an individual prescription.

"CVS Health has been a leader in helping communities prevent prescription drug abuse and we applaud their work to increase access to this life-saving drug for patients without a prescription at CVS Pharmacy locations in Idaho," said Marcia Lee Taylor, president and CEO, Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. "Increasing access to naloxone is a critical public health priority that allows patients and their families to prevent opioid fatalities and recognize when people need help working towards recovery from the disease of addiction."
 

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RediClinic enables online appointment scheduling

BY Michael Johnsen

HOUSTON  – RediClinic announced Thursday that it has added online appointment scheduling to its menu of options for customers seeking high-quality, convenient and affordable healthcare. Using RediClinic’s new online appointment system, customers can now schedule same- or next-day appointments from their desktop, tablet or mobile device.

“We’re excited to be launching our new online appointment system in time for back-to-school season so children and their parents won’t need to wait for physicals and immunizations,” stated Web Golinkin, RediClinic CEO. “With just a few clicks, customers can make same- or next-day appointments at a time that works for them, a feature that advances our commitment to providing maximum convenience in high-quality healthcare.”

Unlike existing registration systems that place patients in a queue, RediClinic customers can make a same- or next-day appointment for a specific time at a chosen location.

While walk-in appointments remain available, the option to schedule an appointment for a specific date, time and location provides added convenience for customers who can plan in advance and don’t want to wait.

RediClinic’s online scheduling system not only saves time for customers, it also enables clinicians to spend more time on patient care by relieving them of the need to capture certain kinds of basic patient information. RediClinic’s online appointment system allows customers to enter their demographic data and answer a brief set of questions to determine the reason for their visit and set an appointment time. Patients then complete the registration process using a tablet once they arrive at the clinic.

“Patient response to our new online appointment system has been overwhelmingly positive since it was introduced in select locations in June,” said Danielle Barrera, RediClinic COO. “Expanding this service to all RediClinic locations is the next logical step in ensuring that RediClinic continues to deliver the superior service that has long been its hallmark.”

RediClinic currently operates 36 clinics inside H-E-B grocery stores in Houston, Austin and San Antonio, Texas, and 53 clinics inside select Rite Aid stores in the greater Philadelphia, Baltimore/Washington D.C. and Seattle areas.

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Study: Drug cost estimates trend higher than actual sales

BY DSN STAFF
BEVERLY HILLS — Cost estimates put out before the launch of new drugs can often overestimate their impact on healthcare spending, according to a new study from research consultancy the Partnership for Health Analytics Research. 
 
One of the most recent and notable examples PHAR’s analysis points to is a cost estimate put out by the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, which predicted that the new class of injectable cholesterol drugs, PCSK9 inhibitors, would cost the healthcare system $7.2 billion. According to initial quarters of sales reports, PHAR said, the drugs have actually costs around $83 million, 1.2% of the estimate. The drugs were predicted in The New England Journal of Medicine to raise patients’s premiums by $124 per person, but PHAR cites an Avalere Health study putting the increase in premiums at $3.29 per member per month. 
 
“Overestimating drug costs by so much cannot lead to good decision making.” PHAR president Dr. Michael Broder said. “In fact, it is likely that patients feel the negative effects of such predictions in the form of early access restrictions and higher copayments.”
 
The whole study looked at predictions for 14 drugs launched since 2012 in various indications. On average, predictions were 11 times higher than the sales reported once the drugs hit the market. Another example the study highlights is Viekira Pak, whose sales were 28% of the predicted $2.9 billion in its first year. 
 
“Drug usage predictions are used to inform pharmacy policy.  Our goal in pointing out these discrepancies is to help improve predictions and decisionmaking,” Broder said. “Ideally, payers and policymakers would be able to use them as planning tools. In their current form, I'm afraid these predictions are so far off that they may just be scaring people into making bad decisions about limiting access to new drugs.”
 
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