PHARMACY

NACDS Annual Meeting rewind

BY DSN STAFF

PALM BEACH, Fla. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores chairman’s gavel officially traded hands last month, here, at NACDS Annual Meeting, as Rite Aid chairman and CEO John Standley wrapped up his one-year term, and incoming chairman Randy Edeker, chairman, CEO and president of Hy-Vee embarked on his.

“Health care is undergoing historic change, which is creating unprecedented demands on our business, but also enormous opportunities to grow,” Standley said during his last remarks as NACDS chairman, outlining the five pillars of NACDS membership value:

  • Strengthening relationships between retailers and suppliers;
  • Protecting patient access to community pharmacy;
  • Expanding scope of healthcare services beyond filling prescriptions;
  • Training the next generation of pharmacists; and
  • Making sure that legislators and policy-makers understand the value community pharmacy brings to health care.

In his first remarks as NACDS chairman, Edeker noted, “The evolution of health care is here, with pharmacies as the face of neighborhood health care. The new healthcare definition includes environmental factors, nutrition, the social environment, emotional and spiritual factors.”

Forecasting what’s ahead for NACDS, Edeker outlined 10 priorities for his leadership, including monitoring closely the ongoing changes in Medicaid; healthcare delivery; attitudes and expectations of care; specialty pharmacy; quality measurements; technology and patient-managed health; millennial trends; cyber security; growing collaboration among companies through NACDS; and political involvement.

From the business sessions to the strategic meetings along cabana row, and all of the evening events, DSN once again covered all the action from NACDS Annual Meeting in its exclusive Show Daily editions. For all the news from Annual Meeting, visit DrugStoreNews.com/show-watch.

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Meijer gears up for specialty Rx with big acquisition

BY Michael Johnsen

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Meijer announced Wednesday that it has signed an agreement to acquire Aureus Health Services, a national specialty pharmacy and health services company based in Pittsburgh, Pa. and a portfolio company of BelHealth Investment Partners, to enhance its customer offerings, particularly to patients with complex chronic conditions.
 
“The ability to provide specialty pharmacy services to our customers supports our objective to provide total patient care,” Meijer president J.K. Symancyk said. “Between Aureus Health Services’ national strength and the strong Midwest footprint of Meijer, this purchase combines two reputable industry leaders, and creates an opportunity for national growth by providing better service to customers.” 
 
Aureus Health Services most recently inked a partnership with CARE Pharmacies to provide management services to CARE's 79 member pharmacies.
 
"We looked at a number of potential partners to assist us in providing a higher level of care to our specialty patients and Aureus was the best," stated Mike Wysong, CEO CARE, in announcing the deal earlier this month. "Aureus' highly trained support team and comprehensive care management model offers a level of support and expertise required to ensure the very best outcomes for our customers." 
 
Aureus Health Services CEO Michael Nameth will remain in his role of CEO in the new Meijer business unit. The acquisition is expected to be finalized within the next few months. Meijer plans to maintain the company’s current patient services centers across the country.
 
 
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NABP honors Rite Aid pharmacy veteran

BY Michael Johnsen

 

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid announced Wednesday that Mike Podgurski, Rite Aid VP pharmacy services, has been named the 2015 honorary president by the National Association of the Boards of Pharmacy. 
 
“Over the course of his career, Mike has made a profound and lasting impact here at Rite Aid and across the retail pharmacy industry,” said Robert Thompson, Rite Aid EVP pharmacy. “We are extremely proud of Mike and we are especially grateful for his many contributions to our company, which have helped us to deliver superior patient care to our pharmacy customers nationwide. Mike is a true servant leader and a champion of community pharmacy and is most-deserving of this honor.”
 
In presenting the award, the Association recognized Mike’s ongoing commitment to the Association through his participation on numerous NABP and industry committees and task forces including the NABP’s Task Force on Pharmacy Licensure Standards, its Community Pharmacy Accreditation Program Steering Committee and its Task Force on Pharmacy Automation; the American Pharmacists Association’s Work Group on the Future of Pharmacy, and the Food and Drug Administration’s Risk Communication Advisory Committee. He was also involved with the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Roundtable on Health Information Technology and Prescription Drug Abuse and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Work Group. 
 
The honor is awarded each year to an individual in recognition of their commitment to supporting the Association’s mission and goals including protecting public health and promoting the Association’s initiatives. Podgurski, a licensed pharmacist with more than 40 years’ experience, was formally recognized during NABP’s Annual Awards Dinner Tuesday evening, the culminating event of the Association’s 111th Annual Meeting in New Orleans. 
 
Podgurski joined Rite Aid in 1987 through the company’s acquisition of SupeRx. During his nearly 30 year tenure at Rite Aid, he has held a variety of positions covering several functional areas including pharmacy operations, pharmacy services, pharmacy development, government affairs and third party administration. Podgurski was named to his current role in June 2007. 
 
A past member and officer of the Pennsylvania State Board of Pharmacy, which he served for 15 years, Podgurski is a member of several professional organizations including the American Pharmacists Association; the National Community Pharmacy Association; the National Association of Chain Drug Stores; the American Society for Automation in Pharmacy and the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association. 
 
Podgurski earned his bachelor of science degree in pharmacy from West Virginia University. 
 

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