PHARMACY

Fact book touts distributors’ contribution to pharma sales

BY Alaric DeArment

ARLINGTON, Va. —More than a quarter trillion dollars in pharmaceutical sales happened through primary healthcare distributors in 2009, according to the latest report from an organization representing them.

The Healthcare Distribution Management Association announced Sept. 24 the release of its “2010-2011 HDMA Factbook: The Facts, Figures & Trends in Healthcare.” The fact book, in its 82nd edition, includes nearly 170 other measures related to the healthcare distribution industry.

“The ‘HDMA Factbook’ sheds light on the tremendous efficiency involved in moving millions of medicines and healthcare products across the supply chain,” HDMA president and CEO John Gray said. “Such efficiency would not be possible without HDMA distributor members, who continue to safely delivery life-saving products to the right patient at the right time, while saving the healthcare system billions of dollars in the process.”

This year’s fact book found that pharmaceutical sales through primary distributors increased to nearly $263 billion, compared with $253 billion in 2008. 2008’s figure represented nearly 85% of the entire market. According to this year’s fact book, a typical HDMA member distribution center handled a daily average of 1,710 orders in 2009, delivering more than 91,000 products daily to pharmacies, clinics, long-term care facilities, hospitals and other outlets.

Data from the patient level seems to support the HDMA’s findings. According to IMS Health, prescription sales of drugs and insulin through retail and nonretail channels grew 5.1% to $300.3 billion in 2009, compared with 1.8% growth in 2008. Factors in that growth included stronger demand for prescription drugs, competitive practices by drug makers, inventory management by retail pharmacies, increased use of specialty drugs and a decreased effect from patent expiries. Antipsychotic drugs remained the top-selling therapeutic class as measured by sales, with sales of $14.6 billion, while lipid regulators were the largest class by dispensed prescriptions, with 211 million prescriptions, a 4% increase over 2008.

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‘Picture This’ forums bring diabetes management awareness to public

BY Allison Cerra

PRINCETON, N.J. A few days after it released a report on how awareness and education play an integral role in the prevention, detection and treatment of diabetes, Novo Nordisk is bringing it to the public.

The drug maker said Friday that, through its collaboration with the Entertainment Industries Council, it will host "Picture This" forums, which include an open discussion among diabetes stakeholders and the media to identify top diabetes communication challenges, explore strategies to address those priorities and strengthen community understanding about diabetes through news media and community affairs programs.

The forums will be held in Philadelphia on Oct. 22 and Seattle on Nov. 18.

 

"Novo Nordisk is proud to join EIC, the media and community leaders in Seattle and Philadelphia to explore ways to improve how diabetes is communicated about and understood by local citizens," said Tony Deluzio, senior medical director at Novo Nordisk. "As the prevalence of diabetes continues to be on the rise, bringing together those on the front line of diabetes care will open the potential to reduce the stigma associated with diabetes and empower those affected by the disease to lead full and productive lives."

 

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Pfizer makes official tender offer for King

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK Pfizer officially has made its tender offer to buy King Pharmaceuticals for $3.6 billion, or $14.25 per share, Pfizer said Friday.

 

The offer constitutes a 40% premium over the closing price of King’s stock on Oct. 11, when Pfizer originally made the offer. King, based in Bristol, Tenn., specializes in pain medications designed to deter misuse and abuse, and Pfizer said the acquisition would enhance its position in the pain-relief market.

 

 

The offer expires at midnight on Nov. 19.

 

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