PHARMACY

NACDS’ Anderson: November Health Affairs adds more ‘heft’ to community pharmacy support

BY Antoinette Alexander

ARLINGTON, Va. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores is hailing articles in the November 2013 edition of Health Affairs that urge greater reliance on pharmacy in new healthcare delivery models and that recommend re-alignment of federal and state policies to empower pharmacy patient care.

“Articles in this edition of Health Affairs read like a playbook for leveraging the value, expertise and accessibility of community pharmacies, for the good of patients nationwide,” stated NACDS president and CEO Steve Anderson. “Pharmacists are well-known for helping patients use medicines and stay healthy, and we are seeing greater and greater awareness of the innovative pharmacy services that can do even more to improve patient health and quality of life.”


With a theme of “Redesigning the Health Care Workforce,” the November 2013 Health Affairs includes articles on the role of pharmacists in accountable care organizations and other new healthcare delivery models; on the need to restructure scope-of-practice regulations for health professions; and on strategies to address the physician shortage.

“This edition of Health Affairs adds even more heft to the mounting support for the vision that pharmacies should be empowered to help shape the healthcare delivery system of tomorrow, in partnership with doctors, nurses and other allies in patient care. It builds on the substantial case for leveraging pharmacy’s strengths as the face of neighborhood health care,” Anderson stated.

 

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Reports: Sen. David Vitter seeks to link vote on compounding bill to bid to prevent Obamacare employer contributions for lawmakers, staff

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Sen. David Vitter, R-La., is holding up a vote on a measure that would strengthen regulations on compounding pharmacies in order to alter a provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to published reports.

Bloomberg reported that Vitter was trying to couple a vote on the compounding law with a proposal to deny lawmakers and their staffs employer contributions for health insurance purchased on the health insurance exchanges set up under ACA. Senators may have to spend a week on work that would otherwise take minutes, according to Bloomberg.

Every senator except Vitter has pledged to vote for the bill, H.R. 3204, which would subject pharmacies that engage in sterile compounding to Food and Drug Administration regulations. The FDA has sought to regulate the pharmacies since last year’s outbreak of fungal meningitis linked to the New England Compounding Center, which sickened hundreds and killed dozens.

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Innovation debuts PharmASSIST Dispenser Model 4

BY Alaric DeArment

JOHNSON CITY, N.Y. — Pharmacy automation products manufacturer Innovation has started rolling out the latest model of its medication dispensing system, the company said Thursday.

Innovation announced the rollout, to its main customer base and the pharmacy industry at large, of the PharmASSIST Dispenser Model 4, calling it the first in the industry to self-calibrate the counting of new medications at a pharmacy. The calibration is based on patented Falcon Detection technology that enables the dispense to count all types of tablet and capsule medication with the highest possible accuracy, Innovation said, and the Model 4 is made with electrostatically charged plastic that repels dust that naturally occurs when handling pills.

"As we established Model 4 development goals, we know how important the concept of self-calibration of medications was to our customers and the industry," Innovation CEO Mary Reno said. "Self-calibration is a huge timesaver for pharmacies, enabling their staff to start counting new medications immediately instead of having to make technical adjustments or wait for a new cell to arrive. This is particularly relevant when a branded drug goes generic."

 

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