PHARMACY

Study: Dementia may be triggered by depression in diabetics

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK Diabetic adults with depression are twice as likely to develop dementia, according to a new study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

To test the idea that the development of dementia — which causes progressive decline of thinking and reasoning abilities — may be caused by both factors, researchers (that included Group Health Research Institute in Seattle and the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System) led by Wayne Katon, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Washington, tracked the outcomes of adults from the Group Health Cooperative’s diabetes registry who agreed to participate.

Over the five-year period, 36 of 455 patients, or 7.9%, of the diabetes patients with major depression were diagnosed with dementia. Among the 3,382 patients with diabetes alone, 163 patients, or 4.8%, developed dementia.

The researchers calculated that major depression with diabetes was associated with a 2.7-fold increase of dementia, compared with diabetes alone. Because the onset of dementia sometimes can be marked by depression, the researchers also adjusted their hazard model to exclude patients who developed dementia in the first two years after their depression diagnosis. The team’s previous findings from earlier studies showed that depression increases the mortality rate among people with diabetes, as well as the rate of such complications as heart, blood vessel, kidney and vision problems.

“It seems prudent for clinicians to add effective screening and treatment for depression to other preventive measures such as exercise, weight control, and blood sugar control to protect against the development of cognitive deficits in patients with diabetes,” researchers said.

Grants from the National Institute of Mental Health and National Institutes of Health, supported the study.

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PHARMACY

McKesson named ‘World’s Most Admired’ by Fortune

BY Allison Cerra

SAN FRANCISCO A healthcare services and information technology company was ranked among the “World’s Most Admired” in an annual survey conducted by Fortune magazine and the Hay Group.

Fortune’s “World’s Most Admired” award measures corporate reputation and performance against nine key attributes: innovation, people management, use of corporate assets, social responsibility, quality of management, financial soundness, long-term investment, quality of products and services and global competitiveness. McKesson ranked No. 1 in all nine categories for the wholesale healthcare sector.

“At McKesson, corporate social responsibility principles are embedded within our mission to help our customers improve patients’ lives,” said John Hammergren, McKesson chairman and CEO. “As we continue to focus on making healthcare safer, more efficient, and less expensive we’re proud to be recognized as a leader among U.S. corporations.”

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Coalition wants pharmacists to play role in drug safety programs

BY Alaric DeArment

ALEXANDRIA, Va. Seventeen organizations and pharmacy chains hope the Food and Drug Administration will let pharmacists have a role in ensuring that patients use medication safely and effectively as it evaluates risk evaluation and mitigation strategies, also known as REMS.

The National Community Pharmacists Association, the American Pharmacists Association, Bartell Drugs, Shopko and 13 others sent a letter to the FDA about pharmacists’ ability to prevent adverse events and evaluate patients’ levels of understand via consultation.

“Studies have shown that community pharmacists providing face-to-face patient interactions may have a greater impact on patient behavior compared to other methods of service delivery,” the letter read. “Clearly, these services could be utilized to meet the goals of a REMS program.”

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