HEALTH

Report: FDA may consider strengthening generic drug regulations

BY Alaric DeArment

BETHESDA, Md. The Food and Drug Administration could decide that some generic drugs are not equivalent to their branded counterparts, according to published reports.

 

Bloomberg reported FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research director Janet Woodcock as saying in an interview that the agency was considering strengthening regulations on some generic drugs because some did not appear to work as well as the branded versions, based on statements from some patients and generic drug company employees. Woodcock had just given a speech at a technical conference organized by the FDA and the Generic Pharmaceutical Association.

 

 

In 2008, controversy arose amid anecdotal reports that patients taking generic drugs for epilepsy had experienced breakthrough seizures that they had not experienced while taking the branded versions of the drugs. That gave rise to the introduction of generic “carve-out” legislation in 35 states that would have placed restrictions on when a generic drug can be used, though only three of them passed.

 

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Walgreens launches Rx savings club with Epocrates

BY Allison Cerra

SAN MATEO, Calif. A drug store chain and a leading provider of mobile drug reference tools and interactive services have inked a deal to provide patients with lower-cost medication options, yielding significant monthly savings on frequent and required medications.

Walgreens and Epocrates’ Walgreens Prescription Savings Club is a formulary list of more than 8,000 branded and generic medications, which now is easily accessible to physicians and other prescribing healthcare providers using Epocrates’ mobile and online drug reference products, the companies said. Using Epocrates, healthcare providers quickly can check and compare the Walgreens PSC formulary to determine if a less expensive drug option is available for patients.

More than 2 million pharmacy patients are enrolled in Walgreens PSC.

“Providing the Epocrates network of prescribers convenient access to our Prescription Savings Club prices will help continue to drive awareness around the exceptional value the discount club offers on a broad range of medications,” said Richard Ashworth, Walgreens VP pharmacy operations. “As healthcare providers, we help patients be compliant with their medications and want to make sure they are aware of their options, including ways to realize savings without compromising safety, service or convenience.”

Epocrates’ free drug reference application, featuring retail, government and health insurance formulary lists, is available online or for download to such mobile devices as iPhone, BlackBerry, Droid and Palm. Further information about the Prescription Savings Club is available at Walgreens.com/rxsavingsclub.

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Nutramax’s joint health supplement featured in book

BY Allison Cerra

EDGEWOOD, Md. CosaminASU was named a preferred joint health supplement in a new book, "FrameWork for the Knee."

“In ‘FrameWork for the Knee,’ Dr. Nick DiNubile continues to stress the importance of exercise, nutrition and the mind in maintaining health,” said Troy Henderson, VP corporate operations and professional services at Nutramax Labs. “Physicians repeatedly recommended Cosamin products because of their high-quality ingredients and Nutramax Labs’s strict adherence to [good manufacturing practices].”

 

Added the book’s author Dr. Nick DiNubile, “Not only do I take CosaminASU myself, I also recommend CosaminASU to my patients who have joint issues and who have had cartilage regeneration type of surgery, such as microfracture or chondrocyte transplantation.”

 

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