PHARMACY

FDA approves first single-entity, extended-release hydrocodone drug

BY Alaric DeArment

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new opioid painkiller made by Zogenix, the agency said Friday.

The FDA announced the approval of Zohydro ER (hydrocodone) extended-release capsules for the management of pain severe enough to require daily, around-the-clock, long-term treatment. The agency said the drug was the first extended-release hydrocodone product not combined with another drug, such as acetaminophen, to be approved by the agency.

Because it is a so-called single-entity hydrocodone product, Zohydro ER is listed as a Schedule II controlled substance. Drugs that combine no more than 15 mg of hydrocodone with another analgesic, such as AbbVie’s Vicodin, are Schedule III drugs, though the FDA said this week that it would recommend those products for CII scheduling as well.

 

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Report: Walgreens to acquire five pharmacies operated by hospital system Meritus Health

BY Michael Johnsen

HAGERSTOWN, Md. — According to a Herald-Mail Media report published Thursday, Walgreens is set to acquire five Home Care pharmacies operated by hospital system Meritus Health within the next six weeks. 

The inpatient pharmacy that serves all patients of Meritus Medical Center is separate from the retail Home Care Pharmacy business and will remain unaffected, according to the report.

“We did a strategic assessment of our pharmacy business more than a year ago and recognized that like many other healthcare services, there are substantial changes taking place in the retail pharmacy market,” Meritus Health’s president and CEO Joseph Ross reported to the Herald-Mail. “We evaluated many potential partners and were most impressed with Walgreens for their level of commitment to customer service and quality patient care. After thorough and thoughtful review, we chose to partner with Walgreens. This enables Meritus Enterprises to continue to focus on its core business and continue to strengthen its physician practices in this era of healthcare reform.” 

 

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All American Pet Co. to sell NutraBars for dogs at Albertsons

BY Alaric DeArment

LOS ANGELES — Albertsons has placed an order for what is being called the "first true food bar" for dogs.

All American Pet Co. said Friday it received an order from the grocer for NutraBars, which are designed to be high in protein and low in fat, and are made in the United States.

The company said it also was expecting an order for Chewies Dog Treats, which are all-natural and made with peanuts, cheese and bacon. Albertsons, based in Boise, Idaho, operates 1,119 stores under 12 banners in 29 states.

 

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