PHARMACY

PhRMA taps Brian Toohey to head international advocacy

BY David Salazar
WASHINGTON — The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America on Thursday announced the addition of Brian Toohey as SVP international advocacy, effective July 11. 
 
Toohey is the former president and CEO of the Semiconductor Industry Association, where he oversaw that industry’s federal advocacy, international trade and technology programs. Before joining the SIA, Toohey had been at PhRMA, first as a lead international lobbyist and then as the leader of its international advocacy team. 
 
“As the biopharmaceutical industry develops bold new treatments that save and improve lives, Brian's proven leadership skills and deep experience in international health policy and advocacy will help get these medicines to patients who need them around the world,” PhRMA president and CEO Stephen J. Ubl said. “He has a strong track record of working effectively with international governments, multilateral organizations and global stakeholders to ensure greater patient access to the breakthrough therapies pioneered by PhRMA member companies.”
 
Toohey also serves on the Dept. of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Advisory Committee, and is an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service. 
 
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PHARMACY

Upsher-Smith recognized with HDA DIANA award

BY David Salazar
Left to right: HDA president and CEO John Gray, Upsher-Smith senior director national accounts Brad Leonard, Upsher-Smith national accounts manager Mike Muzetras and HDA chairman and Dakota Drug CEO Ted Scherr. 
 
MAPLE GROVE, Minn. — The Healthcare Distribution Alliance (formerly the Healthcare Distribution Management Association) has honored Upsher-Smith Laboratories with a Distribution Industry Award for Notable Achievement in Healthcare Award. The DIANA award was given to Upsher-Smith for “Best Overall Branded Pharmaceutical Product Manufacturer with Less than $300 Million in Sales.”
 
Upsher-Smith has received the award four times in the past six years, and it was one of 12 DIANA award winners honored at the HAD’s 2016 Business and Leadership Conference held in Colorado Springs, Colo. on June 13. 
 
“We are honored to have been selected for a DIANA award, and especially to be recognized again as the year's 'Best Overall Branded Pharmaceutical Product Manufacturer' in our sales category,” Upsher-Smith VP global sales Scott Hussey, who was at the awards ceremony, said. “Upsher-Smith strives to meet and exceed current standards of pharmaceutical manufacturing excellence, and we are proud to be acknowledged for our efforts to bring high-quality, high-value products to patients across the nation.”
 
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FDA approves Gilead’s hepatitis C drug Epclusa

BY David Salazar
SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved Gilead Sciences’ Epclusa (sofosbuvir 400 mg/velpatasvir 100 mg), the company announced earlier this week. Epclusa is a single tablet treatment for adults with genotype 1-6 chronic hepatitis and for patients with hepatitis C genotype 2 and 4 without the need for ribavirin. The drug for 12 weeks was approved for use in patients without cirrhosis or with compensated cirrhosis and in combination with ribavirin. 
 
“Today’s approval represents a significant advance for patients with HCV genotypes 2 and 3, who previously required more complex and costly regimens,” said John Milligan, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Gilead. “As the first and only pan-genotypic cure for hepatitis C, Epclusa has the potential to eliminate the need for genotype testing, which can be a barrier to treatment in certain resource-constrained settings. We look forward to making Epclusa available to patients around the world as quickly as possible.”
 
Epclusa received Priority Review and Breakthrough Therapy designations from the FDA. 
 
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