PHARMACY

HDMA salutes Cardinal Health executive with award

BY Michael Johnsen

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Healthcare Distribution Management Association on Tuesday honored Neil Warren of Cardinal Health with its Distribution Management Award for Career Achievement.

The award, presented at the HDMA’s 2011 Distribution Management Conference and Technology Expo in Tampa, Fla., recognizes a distribution industry professional with at least 15 years of service who demonstrates the highest standards of integrity, has made significant contributions to the healthcare distribution industry and is respected by peers and trading partners.

Throughout his 25-year career in healthcare distribution, including the last 15 years at Cardinal Health, Warren has worked to foster effective and collaborative trading partner relationships and develop innovative solutions to enhance supply chain security and efficiency, HDMA stated.

In the past 10 years as VP industry and supplier relations, he has served as a trusted point of contact for all of Cardinal Health’s suppliers, including branded, generic and consumer health manufacturers. Over the years, he has assisted in developing creative programs to drive supplier behavior and value-added solutions for trading partners, and has excelled in welcoming new suppliers and advising them on how best to collaborate with Cardinal Health to successfully launch new products.

Warren also is known and respected for his extensive knowledge around a variety of critical industry topics, including bar coding, pedigree, returns, supply chain integrity and other legislative affairs.

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New bill looks to crack down on Rx theft, receives support from PSM

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — Sens. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.; Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va.; Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.; and Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, introduced new legislation that seeks to curb prescription drug theft through strengthened penalties and additional tools for law enforcement.

If approved, the legislation would:

  • Increase possible sentences for robbing pharmacies of controlled substances;

  • Increase sentences for the theft of medical products and for transportation and storage of stolen medical products, and apply that increase to each current section of federal law that could be used by prosecutors to charge such crimes;

  • Enhance penalties for stolen medical product “fences,” including individuals and organizations who knowingly obtain stolen products for resale into the supply chain;

  • Increase sentences when harm occurs or trust is broken — in other words, when the defendant is employed by an organization in the supply chain or when there was a death as the result of ingestion of a stolen substance;

  • Make theft of medical products a predicate for the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations, or RICO, law, giving law enforcement access to wiretaps and other sophisticated tools; and

  • Provide for civil penalties and forfeiture of ill-gotten gains derived from medical product theft.

This week, the legislation was commended by the Partnership for Safe Medicines, a group of nonprofit organizations and individuals that have policies, procedures or programs to protect consumers from counterfeit or contraband medicines.

"This bill is yet another example of both the growing threat and increased awareness of the global counterfeit drug threat,” stated Thomas Kubic, the Pharmaceutical Security Institute president and CEO and board member of PSM. “When we’re talking about patient and consumer safety, there is no difference between stolen medicines and fake medicines. I am pleased that Sens. Schumer, Rockefeller, Klobuchar and Brown recognize this public health risk and have introduced this important legislation.”

One danger with stolen pharmaceuticals is that once those medicines drop out of the U.S. closed distribution network, they can be manipulated by counterfeiters before being resold, the PSM noted.

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Purdue offers grant to fund Fla. Rx monitoring program

BY Alaric DeArment

STAMFORD, Conn. — Drug maker Purdue Pharma is giving a $1 million grant to the state of Florida to help fund the state’s prescription drug monitoring program, the company said Wednesday.

Purdue said the program was designed to combat illegal diversion and abuse of prescription drugs. Purdue is the maker of OxyContin (oxycodone), an extended-release opioid painkiller that often is a target of abuse.

The company also is giving a $1 million grant to the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy to support the group’s program to help state prescription drug monitoring programs detect “doctor shopping” across state lines.

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