PHARMACY

New collaboration to spotlight diabetes self-management

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Department of Health and Human Services on Thursday announced a collaboration with the American Diabetes Association and the Patient Education Research Center at the Stanford University School of Medicine to increase the number of diabetes self-management training programs in the United States.

This collaboration, which will have a particular focus on Hispanic people with Medicare,  supports HHS’ Interagency Hispanic Elder Initiative. That initiative, launched in 2007, seeks to improve the health of Hispanic senior populations, and has identified diabetes as a primary issue of concern for Hispanic seniors.

“Although Medicare covers diabetes self-management training, there is a shortage of programs nationwide, especially for Spanish-speaking seniors, “ stated Kerry Weems, acting administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. “This new collaboration will increase the number of programs, including those focused on the needs of Hispanic seniors.”

Approximately 18 percent of all Medicare beneficiaries have diabetes. Hispanic beneficiaries are particularly susceptible to the disease and are more than four times likely than non-Hispanics age 65 and over to experience a hospital admission due to uncontrolled diabetes. 

Under the new collaboration, the organizations will work with eight communities across the country with high concentrations of Hispanic seniors to implement a new ADA-certified recognized program specifically designed for Spanish-speaking individuals. The communities are: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, McAllen, Texas; Miami, New York, San Antonio and San Diego.

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FDA announces recall of Tyco ReliOn single-use syringes

BY Alaric DeArment

ROCKVILLE, Md. Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday that Tyco Healthcare Group is recalling a lot of its ReliOn single-use syringes for diabetics.

The recall affects lot number 813900, which contines 100 31-gauge ReliOn hypodermic syringes containing 1 milliliter of U-100 insulin. Tyco distributed 4,710 boxes in the recalled lot, totaling 471,000 individual syringes. Wal-Mart sold the syringes at its stores between Aug. 1 and Oct. 8, and Tyco voluntarily recalled the lot Oct. 9. Wal-Mart has sent letters to 16,500 customers notifying them of the recall and posted an announcement on its Web site.

Can-Am Care distributes the syringes and sells them through Wal-Mart and Sam?s Club stores under the Reli-On brand. The mass-merchandiser has requested that all users of this type of syringe return those that come from the recalled lot.

The FDA said that during the packaging of the syringes, some syringes labeled for use with U-40 insulin were mixed with syringes labeled for use with U-100 insulin and then packaged individually and in boxes as 100 units for use with U-100 insulin. Tyco has received one report of complications due to use of a syringe from the recalled lot.

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Medical information leaks prompt added awareness about records security

BY Alaric DeArment

CHICAGO News reports about high-profile victims of personal medical information security and privacy breaches highlight the need to educate and inform healthcare professionals, their employees, the media and consumers on privacy protection, an professional organization for the health information management industry said Thursday.

The American Health Information Management Association said that educating healthcare professionals on privacy and security issues is an ongoing concern within the health information industry.

“It’s critical for healthcare professionals to receive more education about good privacy practices and appropriate interpretation of HIPAA and other regulations,” AHIMA president Wendy Mangin said.

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