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January 18, 2012

Patent expirations of key blockbuster drugs and efforts by payers to contain costs are likely to bring strong growth to the global generic drug market in the next few years as market-earned revenues grow by more than $100 billion, according to an analysis by research firm Frost & Sullivan.

LONDON — Patent expirations of key blockbuster drugs and efforts by payers to contain costs are likely to bring strong growth to the global generic drug market in the next few years as market-earned revenues grow by more than $100 billion, according to an analysis by research firm Frost & Sullivan.

The report, titled "Generic Pharmaceuticals Market — A Global Analysis" and focusing on the United States and Europe, also found that healthcare expenditure and sales revenues are poised to shift to India, China, Brazil, Turkey and South Korea.

January 16, 2012

It couldn't have been choreographed better if Bob Fosse himself had orchestrated Walgreens' annual shareholders' meeting.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT'S IMPORTANT — It couldn't have been choreographed better if Bob Fosse himself had orchestrated Walgreens' annual shareholders' meeting. It started on Monday, Jan. 9, when Walgreens' executive team entertained reporters to unveil the latest flagship location on State and Randolph. That evening, Illinois governor Pat Quinn and Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel stood with flagship architect Joe Magnacca and officially christened the new store before Tuesday's grand opening.

January 16, 2012

That one of the latest attempts to require prescriptions for cough-cold remedies containing pseudoephedrine appears headed for failure isn't just good news for the retailers that sell those products and the people who need them, it also may encourage those trying to curb the manufacture and use of methamphetamine to focus their efforts on methods that already work, such as the National Precursor Log Exchange, also known as NPLEx, a real-time, industry-funded electronic system that tracks sales of PSE products and is active in 17 states.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT'S IMPORTANT — That one of the latest attempts to require prescriptions for cough-cold remedies containing pseudoephedrine appears headed for failure isn't just good news for the retailers that sell those products and the people who need them, it also may encourage those trying to curb the manufacture and use of methamphetamine to focus their efforts on methods that already work, such as the National Precursor Log Exchange, also known as NPLEx, a real-time, industry-funded electronic system that tracks sales of PSE products and is

January 11, 2012

The maker of Twinkies and Wonder Bread has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

NEW YORK — The maker of Twinkies and Wonder Bread has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

Irving, Texas-based Hostess Brands carried $860 million in debt and also faced high labor costs and rising prices for sugar and other ingredients that exceeded its annual sales of about $2.5 billion, according to published reports. Hostess previously filed for bankruptcy protection in 2004 and emerged in 2009.

January 11, 2012

One day before Walgreens hosted its 2012 annual shareholder meeting in Chicago on Wednesday afternoon, the chain showcased its latest flagship store to its hometown crowd. And even as Walgreens stares down its Express Scripts counterparts across the field, the head office made one thing perfectly clear to Chicago and its shareholders: Walgreens no longer is on a path to own well; it's on a path to dominate well.

CHICAGO — One day before Walgreens hosted its 2012 annual shareholder meeting here Wednesday afternoon, the chain showcased its latest flagship store to its hometown crowd. It was Jordanesque — Chicago knows what a championship team looks like, the Cubs notwithstanding — and even as Walgreens stares down its Express Scripts counterparts across the field, the head office made one thing perfectly clear to Chicago and its shareholders: Walgreens no longer is on a path to own well; it's on a path to dominate well.

January 9, 2012

A CVS Caremark study found that the company's integrated pharmacy-based program — Pharmacy Advisor — increased medication adherence rates and physician initiation of prescriptions for concomitant medications, improving care for diabetes patients and resulting in savings for health plans, the company announced on Monday.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — A CVS Caremark study found that the company's integrated pharmacy-based program — Pharmacy Advisor — increased medication adherence rates and physician initiation of prescriptions for concomitant medications, improving care for diabetes patients and resulting in savings for health plans, the company announced on Monday.

January 9, 2012

Rite Aid has hired Wendy Barnes as group VP managed care, the retail pharmacy chain said Monday.

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid has hired Wendy Barnes as group VP managed care, the retail pharmacy chain said Monday.

Reporting to SVP pharmacy services Chris Hall, Barnes will be responsible for all aspects of managed care, including contracting; relationships with managed care organizations, pharmacy benefit managers and third-party payers; and developing new strategic partnerships.

January 6, 2012

It's been a big week for Walgreens. Following its exit from Express Scripts' pharmacy network, the pharmacy retailer introduced a new program to help patients either keep their pharmacy home at Walgreens or to help transition them to a new pharmacy. Why help transition customers to the competition? Because it's the right thing to do. As Greg Wasson told DSN editor Rob Eder in an exclusive interview, "our No. 1 priority is to take care of patients."

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT'S IMPORTANT — It's been a big week for Walgreens. Following its exit from Express Scripts' pharmacy network, the pharmacy retailer introduced a new program to help patients either keep their pharmacy home at Walgreens or to help transition them to a new pharmacy. Why help transition customers to the competition? Because it's the right thing to do. As Greg Wasson told DSN editor Rob Eder in an exclusive interview, "our No. 1 priority is to take care of patients."

January 5, 2012

Safeway on Thursday announced the sale of 16 of its Genuardi's stores in the greater Philadelphia area to Giant Food Stores, a division of Ahold USA.

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway on Thursday announced the sale of 16 of its Genuardi's stores in the greater Philadelphia area to Giant Food Stores, a division of Ahold USA. Safeway will continue to operate these stores until the transaction closes, and the company is working through an orderly transition for all of these stores.

In addition, Safeway plans to close three Genuardi's stores and sell the remaining eight Genuardi's stores, which it will continue to operate while it is working with potential buyers.

January 5, 2012

Walgreens on Thursday reported an approximate 150 basis-point negative impact on prescriptions filled based on prescription transfers, and other trend analysis of prescriptions managed by Express Scripts, as the chain posted its first monthly earnings statement following the discontinuation of Walgreens' relationship with Express Scripts.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Thursday reported an approximate 150 basis-point negative impact on prescriptions filled based on prescription transfers, and other trend analysis of prescriptions managed by Express Scripts, as the chain posted its first monthly earnings statement following the discontinuation of Walgreens' relationship with Express Scripts. That represents an increase from a 110 basis-point impact in November, but falls short of the 200 basis-point impact projected by Credit Suisse research analyst Ed Kelly earlier this week.

January 3, 2012

Geisinger Health System may be the largest employer to discriminate against a declining minority — smokers — beginning Feb. 1.

DANVILLE, Pa. — Geisinger Health System may be the largest employer to discriminate against a declining minority — smokers — beginning Feb. 1.

Geisinger last week announced it will no longer hire job applicants who use tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars and chewing or smokeless tobacco.

January 3, 2012

Walgreens on Friday unveiled a plan to help Express Scripts patients to either continue using Walgreens when possible or to make a smooth transition to another community pharmacy.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Friday unveiled a plan to help Express Scripts patients to either continue using Walgreens when possible or to make a smooth transition to another community pharmacy. The plan seeks to minimize patient disruption and inconvenience, the pharmacy operator stated.

December 23, 2011

Rather than take off for Christmas, the editors of Drug Store News took a look at the year ahead and the stories, issues and trends that will make headlines in retail pharmacy in 2012.

Rather than take off for Christmas, the editors of Drug Store News took a look at the year ahead and the stories, issues and trends that will make headlines in retail pharmacy in 2012.

December 23, 2011

So far two retailers — Supervalu and Walmart — have pulled lots of Emfamil Premium Newborn powdered formula before any recall has been issued after learning of an infant's death this past weekend, according to published reports.

GLENVIEW, Ill. — So far two retailers — Supervalu and Walmart — have pulled lots of Emfamil Premium Newborn powdered formula before any recall has been issued after learning of an infant's death this past weekend, according to published reports.

December 22, 2011

In the wake of a key Senate subcommittee hearing this month, and on the heels of the collapse of the blockbuster AT&T and T-Mobile merger, four more U.S. lawmakers have joined the growing ranks of consumer groups, members of Congress and employers questioning the proposed mega-merger of pharmacy benefit managers Express Scripts and Medco Health Solutions.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — In the wake of a key Senate subcommittee hearing this month, and on the heels of the collapse of the blockbuster AT&T and T-Mobile merger, four more U.S. lawmakers have joined the growing ranks of consumer groups, members of Congress and employers questioning the proposed mega-merger of pharmacy benefit managers Express Scripts and Medco Health Solutions.
 

December 22, 2011

Medication adherence is as high or slightly better among patients filling 90-day prescriptions at retail versus mail order, according to a new Walgreens study published in the November issue of the American Journal of Managed Care that the chain highlighted Thursday.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Medication adherence is as high or slightly better among patients filling 90-day prescriptions at retail versus mail order, according to a new Walgreens study published in the November issue of the American Journal of Managed Care that the chain highlighted Thursday.

According to the study, adherence levels for 90-day at retail were 77%, while at mail-order adherence levels were 76%.

December 21, 2011

Safeway, in a release issued Wednesday, thanked its customers and employees for their generosity for donating food and toys to a number of Safeway Foundation charities this holiday season.

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway, in a release issued Wednesday, thanked its customers and employees for their generosity for donating food and toys to a number of Safeway Foundation charities this holiday season.

December 21, 2011

As Walgreens girds itself for life outside of the Express Scripts pharmacy network, company executives, over the course of a Wednesday morning first-quarter conference call, continued to maintain that they, along with healthcare payers and employers, will be better off for it.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — As Walgreens girds itself for life outside of the Express Scripts pharmacy network, company executives, over the course of a Wednesday morning first-quarter conference call, continued to maintain that they, along with healthcare payers and employers, will be better off for it.

December 21, 2011

Walgreens on Wednesday again made its case for keeping its more than 8,000 points of care in the Express Scripts pharmacy network: Excluding Walgreens will not afford Express Scripts' customers any cost savings.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Wednesday again made its case for keeping its more than 8,000 points of care in the Express Scripts pharmacy network: Excluding Walgreens will not afford Express Scripts' customers any cost savings. Besides, if Walgreens does wind up out of the Express Scripts network at the top of the new year, many of those health plans and employers will start looking for ways to get Walgreens back in network, most likely by switching pharmacy benefit managers at their first opportunity.

December 20, 2011

At its annual Analyst Day in New York on Tuesday, CVS Caremark executives outlined strong growth for 2012 and unveiled several new offerings and initiatives that are expected to help drive profitable long-term growth as it works to reinvent pharmacy and focus on its “integration sweet spots.”

NEW YORK — At its annual Analyst Day in New York on Tuesday, CVS Caremark executives outlined strong growth for 2012 and unveiled several new offerings and initiatives that are expected to help drive profitable long-term growth as it works to reinvent pharmacy and focus on its “integration sweet spots.”

December 20, 2011

The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board on Tuesday announced a push to inform patients with practical solutions on how to best utilize remaining 2011 flexible spending account funds.

WASHINGTON — The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board on Tuesday announced a push to inform patients with practical solutions on how to best utilize remaining 2011 flexible spending account funds.

December 19, 2011

Bi-Lo and Winn-Dixie Stores on Monday announced that the companies will merge to create an organization of approximately 690 grocery stores and 63,000 employees in eight states throughout the southeastern United States.

GREENVILLE, S.C. — Bi-Lo and Winn-Dixie Stores on Monday announced that the companies will merge to create an organization of approximately 690 grocery stores and 63,000 employees in eight states throughout the southeastern United States.

Under the terms of the definitive agreement, BI-LO will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Winn-Dixie stock in the merger. Winn-Dixie shareholders will receive $9.50 in cash per share of Winn-Dixie common stock, representing a premium of approximately 75% over the closing price of Winn-Dixie common stock on Dec. 16.

December 19, 2011
For those of us in the healthcare and wellness business, we realize our industry is changing and evolving quickly, mostly out of pure necessity. The healthcare industry is overburdened, over budget and in need of an overhaul. But the potential for our healthcare and wellness system is incredible for all audiences it touches — from consumers to medical professions to healthcare and wellness marketers.

For those of us in the healthcare and wellness business, we realize our industry is changing and evolving quickly, mostly out of pure necessity.  The healthcare industry is overburdened, over budget and in need of an overhaul.  But the potential for our healthcare and wellness system is incredible for all audiences it touches — from consumers to medical professions to healthcare and wellness marketers. Throughout this past year familiar themes rang clear across our industry, giving us insights into what will play vital roles for healthcare in our future.

December 15, 2011

CVS Caremark has been awarded the 2011 Supply Chain Distinction Award North America in the Logistics Best Practice category, which recognizes companies that drive logistics excellence throughout the organization through the development of efficient, sustainable and cost-effective strategies.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark has been awarded the 2011 Supply Chain Distinction Award North America in the Logistics Best Practice category, which recognizes companies that drive logistics excellence throughout the organization through the development of efficient, sustainable and cost-effective strategies.

The awards were announced last week at the annual Supply Chain Logistics Summit held in Dallas, Texas.

December 15, 2011

Kroger on Thursday announced that four of the UFCW/multi-employer pension funds to which the company contributes will merge into a new fund, effective Jan. 1. This new arrangement is expected to reduce Kroger's annual pension contribution expense and will secure the pension benefits of more than 65,000 Kroger associates.

CINCINNATI — Kroger on Thursday announced that four of the UFCW/multi-employer pension funds to which the company contributes will merge into a new fund, effective Jan. 1. This new arrangement is expected to reduce Kroger's annual pension contribution expense and will secure the pension benefits of more than 65,000 Kroger associates.