HEALTH

SmartDiabetes products arrive in Florida Walgreens stores

BY Michael Johnsen

TITUSVILLE, Fla. — Infopia America last week announced that its new SmartDiabetes product line has launched in 284 Walgreens drug stores in central and northeast Florida. The central Florida Walgreens region includes stores in Jacksonville, Orlando, Lakeland, Daytona Beach and Melbourne.

The SmartDiabetes product line features both a blood-glucose monitor and blood-pressure monitor, which are enabled to transmit their results to a HIPPA-compliant server for prompt and accurate provider and caregiver review. The server, which is branded the Test n’ Share Network, is powered by the Eocene System, allowing patients to manage their personal health records and electronic log books, as well as share them in real-time with their healthcare team.

“At Infopia America, our mission is to improve testing compliance and enhance patient care through increased communication using result sharing technology,” said Bryan Sowards, CEO of Infopia America. “We believe the new affordable SmartDiabetes product line will allow persons with diabetes a way to proactively manage their condition with their healthcare team for better outcomes.”

Walgreens has trained its area pharmacists and store managers and will be showcasing the SmartDiabetes line next to the pharmacy on an endcap. “We are looking forward to enhancing the lives of our customers with diabetes by offering them the SmartDiabetes solution,” said Marlin Hutchens, regional VP for Walgreens. “We are extremely excited about the impact the SmartDiabetes program will have in creating a stronger consultative relationship [among] our pharmacists, customers and their healthcare team. The SmartDiabetes program takes patient care to the next level, and we strongly believe everyone benefits from that.”

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Perrigo facility cleared by FDA

BY Michael Johnsen

ALLEGAN, Mich. — Perrigo on Tuesday announced that the Detroit office of the Food and Drug Administration has concluded its re-inspection of Perrigo’s Allegan facility.

The FDA has informed Perrigo that, effective immediately, Perrigo has an acceptable regulatory status, such that any pending export license and abbreviated new drug applications from this facility will once again be eligible for review and approval.

"On behalf of Perrigo, I want to thank the FDA Detroit district for making the re-inspection of our facilities a priority and for working cooperatively with us to resolve the issues previously raised in the warning letter,” stated Perrigo chairman and CEO Joe Papa. “We are convinced that this process has made us a better company by enhancing the quality of our affordable healthcare products for our customers."

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Allergy season to last longer this year

BY Michael Johnsen

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The 2011 allergy season is expected to be 27 days longer in the northernmost parts of North America, adding almost a month of suffering to the typical pollen allergy season of February through October, a study published Tuesday by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences determined.

The longer allergy season could be particularly rough on eye allergy sufferers, suggested Johnson & Johnson Vision Care. "Eye allergies affect 1-in-every-5 individuals, and it is estimated that 50% of individuals with seasonal and indoor allergies also experience some degree of ocular allergy," stated Paul Karpecki, clinical director for the Koffler Vision Group.

Karpecki suggested consumers figure out the cause of their allergies and then try to avoid the trigger. “[For example,] if pollen is what bothers you, try to stay indoors and minimize the amount of time you are in the wind, which blows allergens around,” he suggested.

Allergy season is particularly challenging for some contact lens wearers because allergens and other irritants can build up on contacts over time, leading to discomfort and such symptoms as itching, tearing and redness. "Putting a clean, fresh lens into the eye each day minimizes the potential for the buildup of irritants that occur with repeated use of the same pair of lenses,” Karpecki said.

Karpecki also suggested allergy sufferers take more frequent showers to wash away allergens and turn off ceiling fans at night, as allergens and dust are easily picked up by a fan.

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