NACDS to FDA advisory committee: Curb DXM abuse without impeding appropriate use
ALEXANDRIA, Va. As the Food and Drug Administration’s Drug Safety and Risk Management Committee debated Tuesday on ways to curb abuse of cough suppressants containing dextromethorphan, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores testified that the scheduling of dextromethorphan under the federal Controlled Substances Act is not the right solution.
“Dextromethorphan is consumers’ No.1 choice to treat cough. Depriving consumers of the option to self-medicate with dextromethorphan would have substantial public health consequences because cough and cold are extremely prevalent in the U.S. population, affecting the average adult two to four times per year,” NACDS VP regulatory affairs Kevin Nicholson said to the FDA Drug Safety and Risk Management Committee.
NACDS also urged the committee to consider the approach set forth by Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., in the Dextromethorphan Abuse Reduction Act of 2009, which would prohibit the sale of dextromethorphan to minors.
“Dextromethorphan is the most common ingredient in over-the-counter cough medicines in the United States,” Nicholson stated. “[The] abuse of dextromethorphan is concentrated primarily among teenagers, and this concentration makes possible a targeted and strategic approach to preventing abuse.”
In addition to working on legislative remedies, the association also has worked with the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Drug Enforcement Administration to help raise awareness of the scourge of medication abuse, particularly among young people.
Lil’ Drug Store Products introduces RepHresh Brilliant tampons
NEW YORK Lil’ Drug Store Products has launched a "brilliant" feminine protection product.
New RepHresh Brilliant tampons reduce the pH increase that occurs during a woman’s period.
"In healthy women, vaginal pH is typically 3.5 to 4.5 and blood has a pH of 7.4, so during a woman’s period, pH is elevated by menstrual fluids. Tampons retain the fluids that cause pH to increase. RepHresh Brilliant is the first tampon clinically shown to reduce the usual pH increase," said Lauren Streicher, assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology.
RepHresh Brilliant tampons are available at Drugstore.com and Walgreens.
New OTC counseling tool helps clinicians SMART-en up
In a move that may help drive recommendations of nonprescription medicines, SMARTcare last month announced the creation of a new counseling tool specifically designed to provide retail clinicians with education around over-the-counter medicines for some of the most popular conditions that retail clinicians see.
“Our offering has been built with the professional clinicians and the consumers they see in mind,” Ken DeBaene, chief marketing officer at SMARTcare, told Drug Store News. “As the clinics and the emerging care model structure expand out into other areas, our intent is to make sure that we’ve got educational content for the consumer that the practitioner can use in [his or her] diagnosis and treatment conversations with those patients.”
“Our launch partner was the [Convenient Care Association],” noted Ted Lawless, director of sales at SMARTcare. “We’re still very much in [the] launch phase,” he said, but initial feedback from both clinicians and potential manufacturer sponsors has been extremely positive.
The business model is supported through sponsorships by OTC manufacturers that are then able to reach consumers at the point of care. “The brands benefit from their exposure to healthcare professionals,” DeBaene said. “And the recommendation of their product, along with a purchase incentive, really delivers strong consumer [activity].”
There are five general categories included as part of the SMARTcare offering today, including such respiratory conditions as allergies and cold/flu; such health management as arthritis pain and heart health; such common illnesses as ear infections and heart-burn; such skin conditions as acne and athlete’s foot; and such minor injuries as burns and tick removal.
The Foundation for HealthSMART Consumers, a not-for-profit organization, provides the SMARTcare educational content. The foundation leads a social program to engage healthcare consumers through information and education.