HEALTH

NBTY reports Q2 earnings

BY Michael Johnsen

RONKONKOMA, N.Y. For the fiscal second quarter ended March 31, NBTY recorded net sales of $596 million, an increase of 12%.

The Leiner Health Products business, which was acquired in July 2008, has been fully integrated into NBTY operations; accordingly its sales can no longer be separately identified. Since acquiring Leiner, the company has eliminated in excess of $30 million in annualized non-manufacturing costs.

Net sales for the North American Retail division, comprised of Vitamin World Stores in the United States and LeNaturiste stores in Canada, were $52 million. Vitamin World same-store sales increased 4%, the company reported.

“Vitamin World results seem to indicate that the new modernization of the stores has had a favorable impact on the U.S. stores,” NBTY stated.

Net sales at LeNaturiste decreased 18%, all attributable to a weaker Canadian dollar, and the division operated at a loss of $1 million. LeNaturiste will continue to focus on increasing gross margins by utilizing more in-house manufactured products and more targeted promotions.

During the fiscal second quarter of 2009, the North American Retail division closed 3 stores and added 3 new stores. At the end of the fiscal second quarter of 2009, the North American Retail division operated a total of 531 stores, consisting of 444 Vitamin World stores in the United States and 87 LeNaturiste stores in Canada. Vitamin World plans to add 3 stores and close 5 stores during the remainder of fiscal 2009.

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NCPA, Roche Diagnostic team up with new online diabetic resource

BY Jim Frederick

ALEXANDRIA, Va. In an alliance with Roche Diagnostic, the National Community Pharmacists Association is giving its independent pharmacy members a new tool to expand their presence in the crucial market for diabetic care services and supplies.

NCPA has launched a new, online resource, dubbed the “Diabetes Supply Center,” through the organization’s Pharmacist e-Link. The Web site is designed to provide pharmacists with the information needed to serve patients with diabetes more effectively and make diabetic supplies a viable part of their business, according to the group.

The site helps pharmacists navigate the regulatory process for competitive bidding, accreditation or surety bonds, NCPA noted Monday. It also provides business tools, articles catering to pharmacists, news updates, expert opinion forums and a regular newsletter.

“Many independent community pharmacies are caught between the need to serve their patients with diabetes and navigating an excessive amount of government regulation and costs if they want to continue selling medical supplies such as diabetes testing strips,” said NCPA president Holly Whitcomb Henry. “NCPA is proud to partner with Roche Diagnostic to help community pharmacies better confront all of these challenges through the wide array of information found at the Diabetes Supply Center on Pharmacist e-Link.”

Added Luc Vierstraete, Head of Roche Diagnostic Care North America, ““The role of pharmacists continues to grow and evolve and Roche recognizes their important role in the health care community.”

An American Diabetes Association study in 2007 found 17.5 million people diagnosed with diabetes in America at a cost of $174 billion. The average patient spends approximately $2,500 at community pharmacies for diabetes medications and supplies.

For more information, visit http://www.pharmacistelink.com/accu-chek/.

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Pure Biosciences’ SDC-based disinfectants meet CDC standards for swine flu care

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN DIEGO Pure Bioscience on Sunday confirmed that all EPA-registered SDC-based disinfectants, branded Axen30, meet the recommendations by the United States Centers for Disease Control for infection control for care of patients with confirmed or swine flu in both home and healthcare settings.

“Pure’s SDC-based disinfectant is effective against both human and avian influenza A, and our distributors across the nation are poised and ready to respond to the current outbreak,” stated Pure president and CEO Michael Krall. “Should the current outbreak become pandemic, Pure has the manufacturing capability to react not only to the needs in the U.S. but also abroad to supply our powerful disinfectant to governments, healthcare institutions and consumers seeking to effectively stem the spread of swine flu.”

Axen30 is sold through a variety of distributors under more than a dozen private label brands, the company stated. Pure’s SDC-based disinfectants have been registered by the EPA specifically for use on children’s toys, cribs, high chairs and other sensitive areas of the home as well as for use on hard surfaces in multitudes of environments, including hospitals, schools and offices.

Guidance published by the CDC on April 24 for infection control in healthcare settings advises that “disinfection strategies used during influenza seasons can be applied to the environmental management of swine influenza.” Additional guidance published on April 25 for infection control in the home recommends keeping “surfaces (especially bedside tables, surfaces in the bathroom, and toys for children) clean by wiping them down with a household disinfectant according to directions on the product label.”

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