PHARMACY

NJ task force is assembled to examine physician gifts from drug companies

BY Drew Buono

TRENTON, N.J. Attorney General Anne Milgram has assembled a task force to explore the issue of pharmaceutical companies and medical device makers giving gifts and other compensation to physicians and to determine if by doing this, what impact, if any, had on patient care in the state.

The task force, the Attorney General’s Advisory Task Force on Physician Compensation, includes state Department of Health and Senior Services commissioner Fred Jacobs, members of the State Board of Medical Examiners, practicing physicians, industry representatives and consumer advocates.

For the first time, this past summer, the State Board of Medical Examiners began asking New Jersey physicians whether they have accepted gifts or other benefits from medical device or pharmaceutical manufacturers.

“As regulators of health care professionals in New Jersey, we want to ensure that patient care is guided by the unbiased exercise of the physician’s best judgment,” Attorney General Milgram said.

The first meeting of the task force was Wednesday, Sept. 19.

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CVS to offer flu vaccinations in more than 4,000 stores

BY Allison Cerra

WOONSOCKET, R.I. CVS/pharmacy plans to help Americans stay healthy by offering flu vaccinations in over 4,000 of its stores, the company said Wednesday.

The flu vaccinations, which will be offered to customers by Oct. 1, will vary in cost based on location. Vaccines for Medicare Part B beneficiaries who present their Medicare Card will be available at no charge, provided they have not assigned their Medicare benefits to a private Health Maintenance Organization. The offer to receive the flu shots will run through November.

“The annual flu shot clinics at CVS/pharmacy are part of our commitment to help communities stay healthy,” said Papatya Tankut, R.Ph., Vice President of Pharmacy Professional Services at CVS/pharmacy. “By offering convenient locations for flu vaccinations, we’re providing additional opportunities for people across the country to get vaccinated before the peak flu season begins.”

Last year, nearly 400,000 people received flu shots at CVS/pharmacy.

It is strongly recommended people ages 50 and older, and/or have chronic illnesses like diabetes and asthma, receive a yearly flu vaccination, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

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Adams, Lipocine to develop new cough medicines

BY Drew Buono

CHESTER, N.J. Lipocine and Adams Respiratory Therapeutics have entered in an agreement to develop new prescription adult cough products.

Under the terms of the agreement, Adams receives exclusive rights from Lipocine to develop and market multiple prescription adult cough products. Adams will be responsible for performing clinical development, regulatory submission, manufacture, and commercial operations. Lipocine will be responsible for completing the product development work.

Lipocine will have the opportunity to receive reimbursements and payments in exchange for completing development milestones. “Given the large and growing size of the respiratory market, and how patients can benefit from enhanced dosage forms and regimens, we are very pleased to partner with Adams, a company highly respected for its commercialization accomplishments,” said Dr. Mahesh Patel, president and chief executive officer of Lipocine.

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