HEALTH

CDC: H1N1 virus expected to make a large impact on upcoming cough/cold/flu season

BY Drug Store News Team

NEW YORK Today’s novel H1N1 news scare may very well turn out to be a “boy who cried SARS” scenario, in which all the news hype drives frenzied concern through the American consciousness but never culminates into a sharp rise in demand of products — antivirals, N-95 facemasks, hand sanitizers — potentially leaving suppliers and retailers with more inventory than they know what to do with.

 

That’s because for every report out of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that suggests the sky may in fact soon be falling, those reports are hedged by acknowledgements that the H1N1 virus is just as likely to be innocuous as it is even more deadly.

 

To be sure, nobody can really predict a possible viral mutation — and whether that mutation will produce more severe or less severe illness —  outside of the fact that the possibility for mutation exists. It’s got to be like predicting next week’s weather — which is 90% accurate only half the time.

But this we do know. The government is dedicating significant resources against any worse-case scenarios, including a CDC inclined to keep the public informed through regular press briefings. And unlike SARS, which generally got as close to American citizens as Canada but no further, the novel H1N1 virus continues to course through American communities even today, suggesting there will be an up tic in cases with the coming flu season.

That initial resumption of influenza-like illnesses coupled with regular CDC press briefings is likely to drive quite a bit of news coverage in the coming months, news coverage that will significantly drive awareness around the issue. And that suggests that many more Americans will be interested in flu vaccines this year, certainly more than the 40% of the recommended group who were inoculated last year. It also suggests that more and more Americans will be interested in taking CDC-recommended preventative measures such as using hand sanitizers (though demand around N-95 facemasks, which are not recommended for general use by CDC, may not be as great).

So retailers and suppliers should prepare for an interesting season, arming their healthcare professionals with information and stocking their shelves with the appropriate merchandise, because while nobody can predict whether the coming storm will produce scattered showers or fist-sized hail, you can rest assured something will be falling out of that sky.

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Diagnostic Devices in contract with two states for Medicaid-covered blood glucose monitoring systems

BY Michael Johnsen

CHARLOTTE, N.C. Diagnostic Devices on Wednesday announced contracts with the states of Illinois and Missouri around Medicaid coverage of its Prodigy line of blood glucose monitoring systems and test strips.

“We will continue working with other states for coverage under their Medicaid programs, and to demonstrate to them the savings Illinois and Missouri taxpayers will realize with the Prodigy family of products,” stated Rick Admani Abulhaj, Diagnostic COO.

A recent study by University of Florida PharmD candidates found the “talking” feature of the Prodigy AutoCode meter made a “significant improvement” in overall diabetes control and compliance among patients who took part, the company noted.

The Prodigy Voice meter for blind or low-vision diabetes patients has been honored with awards from both the National Federation of the Blind and the American Foundation for the Blind, the company added.

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Fairhaven Health presents clinical study results for FertilAid for Men

BY Michael Johnsen

BELLINGHAM, Wash. Fairhaven Health, which manufactures a male fertility supplement, recently presented a clinical study at the American Society of Andrology’s annual meeting, the company announced Tuesday.

Results from a recent clinical study indicate that FertilAid for Men provides significant improvements in sperm quality for men with abnormal sperm parameters. In particular, results of the 90-day, double blind, placebo-controlled study suggest that FertilAid for Men supports significant increases in the total number of normal motile sperm. Previous clinical studies have suggested a strong relationship between the “total normal-motile sperm count” and the fertility of the man.

“Most of the men that had increased sperm counts while taking FertilAid for Men also showed improvements of 20% or more in the number of healthy sperm,” stated lead researcher J. Ellington.

FertilAid for Men is a male fertility supplement that integrates vitamins, antioxidants, a proprietary blend of herbal ingredients and the amino acid, l-carnitine. Scientific literature suggests that antioxidants can improve male fertility by reducing oxidative stress and damage to spermatozoa, while supporting fundamental protective functions of the seminal plasma which insulate and nourish sperm. In independent studies, antioxidants reduce “free-radical” damage, in particular to the sperm’s DNA or genetic material, resulting in better pregnancy outcomes.

Research on the amino acid, l-carnitine, yields similar pro-fertility findings: L-carnitine supports “sperm metabolism”, or the ability for sperm to break down complex molecules to produce energy. L-carnitine has been shown in a number of clinical studies to enhance several fundamental sperm parameters, including sperm concentration, motility and normal morphology.

Fairhaven Health’s distribution partners include drugstore.com, BabyCenter and CVS.com, as well as a number of clinics and private practices nationwide.

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