PHARMACY

Walgreens gains national approval for fast-growing specialty Rx unit

BY Jim Frederick

DEERFIELD, Ill. The Accreditation Commission for Health Care has given its approval to Walgreens’ Specialty Pharmacy division, a unit of the company’s managed care subsidiary serving patients with special pharmaceutical needs.

ACHC, a private, nonprofit corporation, was developed by home care and community-based providers to help companies improve business operations and the quality of patient care. Accreditation is voluntary, and is based on a process by which healthcare organizations submit to peer review of internal policies, processes and patient care against national standards.

With the accreditation status, Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy locations in Beaverton, Ore.; Glenview, Ill.; Livingston, N.J.; and the Customer Care Center in Orlando, Fla., join Walgreens’ already accredited acquisitions, Medmark in Pittsburgh, Pa.; and OptionCare in Ann Arbor, Mich.?

“We are pleased that Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy is being awarded ACHC?accreditation,” said Michael Nameth, executive vice president of Walgreens?Health Services. “It shows payers, patients and prescribers that our focus on high-quality clinical programs and services is more than just words.”

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FDA announces recall of Tyco ReliOn single-use syringes

BY Alaric DeArment

ROCKVILLE, Md. Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday that Tyco Healthcare Group is recalling a lot of its ReliOn single-use syringes for diabetics.

The recall affects lot number 813900, which contines 100 31-gauge ReliOn hypodermic syringes containing 1 milliliter of U-100 insulin. Tyco distributed 4,710 boxes in the recalled lot, totaling 471,000 individual syringes. Wal-Mart sold the syringes at its stores between Aug. 1 and Oct. 8, and Tyco voluntarily recalled the lot Oct. 9. Wal-Mart has sent letters to 16,500 customers notifying them of the recall and posted an announcement on its Web site.

Can-Am Care distributes the syringes and sells them through Wal-Mart and Sam?s Club stores under the Reli-On brand. The mass-merchandiser has requested that all users of this type of syringe return those that come from the recalled lot.

The FDA said that during the packaging of the syringes, some syringes labeled for use with U-40 insulin were mixed with syringes labeled for use with U-100 insulin and then packaged individually and in boxes as 100 units for use with U-100 insulin. Tyco has received one report of complications due to use of a syringe from the recalled lot.

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Medical information leaks prompt added awareness about records security

BY Alaric DeArment

CHICAGO News reports about high-profile victims of personal medical information security and privacy breaches highlight the need to educate and inform healthcare professionals, their employees, the media and consumers on privacy protection, an professional organization for the health information management industry said Thursday.

The American Health Information Management Association said that educating healthcare professionals on privacy and security issues is an ongoing concern within the health information industry.

“It’s critical for healthcare professionals to receive more education about good privacy practices and appropriate interpretation of HIPAA and other regulations,” AHIMA president Wendy Mangin said.

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