PHARMACY

GMA-sponsored NACDS Marketplace seminar will highlight food partnership opportunities

BY Antoinette Alexander

WASHINGTON — The Grocery Manufacturers Association and the National Association of Chain Drug Stores will host a seminar aimed at enhancing collaboration between food and consumer product manufacturers and retailers in the drug channel during the upcoming NACDS Marketplace Conference, the associations announced on Monday.

The seminar, which will be held on June 26, in conjunction with the NACDS Marketplace Conference in Boston, will be open to all NACDS Marketplace Conference attendees. It will be held in the Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel, at 425 Summer St., in Grand Ballrooms C and D, beginning at 8 a.m.

The seminar will showcase trading partner collaboration strategies and model practices, with the goal of serving consumers — especially those in "food deserts," which refers to geographic areas that lack food stores. Nielsen SVP consumer and shopper insights Todd Hale will deliver keynote remarks about how food products are performing in drug and dollar channels.

Hale will be followed by two panel discussions. The first panel will focus on the products, services and other tools that trading partners are offering to help consumers pursue healthier lifestyles. The second panel will assess the broader landscape of trading partner collaboration opportunities to assist shoppers as they look to drug and other small-format stores for food purchases.

Seminar participants include representatives of General Mills, Hershey, Kraft Foods, Navarro Discount Pharmacy, Rite Aid and Unilever.

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PhRMA: More than 260 medicines in development to treat skin diseases

BY Alaric DeArment

WASHINGTON — More than 200 drugs are under development in the United States for treating skin diseases, according to the country’s largest pharmaceutical industry trade group.

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America said Monday that the country’s drug makers were developing 263 medicines for skin diseases that affect more than one-third of the U.S population. A study by the Lewin Group found that the annual total cost of skin diseases was $39.3 billion in 2005.

According to the PhRMA, these include 69 drugs for skin cancers, including 63 for melanoma; 39 drugs for the autoimmune disorder psoriasis; 58 for skin and tissue infections; 13 for dermatitis; and eight for rosacea.

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Protect Your Care to defend government healthcare programs in TV ads

BY Alaric DeArment

MANCHESTER, N.H. — The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has been a bête noire among much of the Republican party since President Obama signed it into law. But as GOP presidential candidates prepared for the first official debate in Manchester, N.H., one group launched a series of ads defending it and other programs to address the nation’s health coverage gap.

Protect Your Care will launch its first TV ad to defend Medicare, Medicaid, Romneycare — the healthcare-reform law that presidential candidate Mitt Romney signed while governor of Massachusetts — and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Other efforts will include online ads, visibility efforts around Manchester, rapid response and fact checking.

Republicans have called for deep cuts to Medicare and Medicaid in recent months amid the national debate over deficit spending. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., proposed to replace Medicare with a voucher system that many critics derided as “vouchercare” and a poor substitute for the current system.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, spending on Medicare is expected to reach 8% of the country’s GDP by 2035, and 15% by 2080, while Medicaid spending is expected to reach 5% by 2035, and 7% by 2080.

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