HEALTH

Study unveils prevalence of condom use among Americans

BY Michael Johnsen

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. Condom use is higher among black and Hispanic Americans than among white Americans and those from other racial groups, according to findings from the largest nationally representative study of sexual and sexual health behaviors ever fielded, conducted by Indiana University sexual health researchers and published last week in a special issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

The study helped both the public and professionals to understand how condom use patterns vary across these different stages in people’s relationships and across ages, noted Debby Herbenick, associate director of the Center for Sexual Health Promotion, which conducted the study. "Findings show that condoms are used twice as often with casual sexual partners as with relationship partners, a trend that is consistent for both men and women across age groups that span 50 years."

 

One new feature to the study was the inclusion of teens — the study found that many teenagers actually practice abstinence. "Many surveys of adolescent sexual behavior create an impression that adolescents are becoming sexually active at younger ages, and that most teens are sexually active," noted Dennis Fortenberry, professor of pediatrics in the IU School of Medicine, who led the adolescent aspects of the study. "[But] many contemporary adolescents are being responsible by abstaining or by using condoms when having sex."

 

 

Another key finding highlighted in the collection of papers addressed intimacy health among older Americans, finding that many older adults continue to have active sex lives; however, adults older than 40 years have the lowest rates of condom use.

 

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NACDS issues statement on CMS’ withdrawal of AMP provisions

BY Allison Cerra

ALEXANDRIA, Va. The National Association of Chain Drug Stores commended the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on Tuesday after the agency proposed a rule that would withdraw two provisions related to pharmacy Medicaid reimbursement.

In a letter to CMS, NACDS said that it believed the average manufacturer price final rule was "fundamentally flawed, and implemented the Medicaid pharmacy reimbursement provisions of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 in a manner that was inconsistent with congressional intent," the letter stated. "Rather than continuing efforts to implement the flawed AMP final rule, we applaud the agency for moving forward with withdrawing the provisions of the AMP final rule, as well as the multiple-source drug rule."

Federal law defines AMP as “with respect to a covered outpatient drug of a manufacturer for a rebate period, the average price paid to the manufacturer for the drug in the United States by wholesalers for drugs distributed to retail community pharmacies and retail community pharmacies that purchase drugs directly from the manufacturer.” The current AMP policy almost could cause retail pharmacies to lose money on nearly every Medicaid generic prescription they dispense.

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PSE sales tracking system nabs meth ring

BY Michael Johnsen

DALLAS Arkansas state police apprehended and arrested a methamphetamine ring, which had been attempting to acquire large quantities of the precursor ingredient pseudoephedrine at retail pharmacy. The police were tipped off thanks to information provided by LeadsOnLabs, an online system that helps track the illegal sale of PSE, the company announced Monday.

“Breaking up this meth ring was a big step in the fight against meth in the state of Arkansas,” stated Investigator Chris Anderson of the Arkansas state police. In this particular case, some of the individuals already had reached their legal monthly sales limit and were attempting to purchase more pills. The LeadsOnLabs system blocked a total of 43 transactions of the 235 that were attempted by this group.  Because LeadsOnLabs is an online logbook and provides real-time alerts, pharmacies across the state were made aware of this group and immediately were able to deny the sale of additional pills to these individuals.

“We commend the mighty efforts of the Arkansas state police, as well as various local law enforcement agencies, and the work they do to combat meth abuse in their state,” stated Dave Finley, president and CEO of LeadsOnLabs. “We are proud to be able to help them identify individuals and groups of meth makers. Through our partnership we hope to help them win the war against methamphetamines in the state of Arkansas.”

Arkansas instituted the LeadsOnLabs system statewide in an attempt to eradicate meth abuse in the state in 2008, under the direction of Attorney General Dustin McDaniel. The system has been credited with helping law enforcement bust meth labs and track down meth abusers across the state.

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