Content about Medicine

December 23, 2010

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday approved Novartis Pharmaceuticals’ Amturnide (aliskiren, amlodipine and hydrochlorothiazide) tablets for the treatment of high blood pressure, according to the pharma company.

EAST HANOVER, N.J. — The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday approved Novartis Pharmaceuticals’ Amturnide (aliskiren, amlodipine and hydrochlorothiazide) tablets for the treatment of high blood pressure, according to the pharma company. 

Amturnide combines the only approved direct rennin inhibitor worldwide, Tekturna (aliskiren), with the widely used calcium channel blocker amlodipine and the diuretic hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ).

December 23, 2010

The CVS Caremark-sponsored study that illustrates pharmacists and nurses are the most effective healthcare "voice" in promoting medication adherence among patients is important because it marks the first step toward unlocking the potential of the collaborative care model (i.e., pharmacists and nurses), and getting those people who matter to pay attention.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — The CVS Caremark-sponsored study that illustrates pharmacists and nurses are the most effective healthcare "voice" in promoting medication adherence among patients is important because it marks the first step toward unlocking the potential of the collaborative care model (i.e., pharmacists and nurses), and getting those people who matter to pay attention.

December 23, 2010

Marsh Supermarkets recently implemented a $3.99/$9.99 generic drug pricing offer for 30-day and 90-day prescriptions, respectively.

INDIANAPOLIS — Marsh Supermarkets recently implemented a $3.99/$9.99 generic drug pricing offer for 30-day and 90-day prescriptions, respectively.

The program applies to a designated list of generic drugs at commonly prescribed dosages (higher dosages cost more).

December 23, 2010

The industry has a lot to learn in order to determine how to most effectively use electronic communications to improve patient medication adherence, as few studies show how health information technology can be leveraged to motivate patients to take medications as prescribed, according to research sponsored by CVS Caremark.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — The industry has a lot to learn in order to determine how to most effectively use electronic communications to improve patient medication adherence, as few studies show how health information technology can be leveraged to motivate patients to take medications as prescribed, according to research sponsored by CVS Caremark.

December 22, 2010

Pharmacists at a retail pharmacy are the most influential healthcare "voice" in getting patients to take their medications as prescribed, followed by nurses talking with patients as they are discharged from a hospital, according to research sponsored by CVS Caremark.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — Pharmacists at a retail pharmacy are the most influential healthcare "voice" in getting patients to take their medications as prescribed, followed by nurses talking with patients as they are discharged from a hospital, according to research sponsored by CVS Caremark.

December 22, 2010

An over-the-counter herbal supplement believed to improve immunity function has minimal impact in relieving the common cold, according to research by the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health released Monday.

MADISON, Wis. — An over-the-counter herbal supplement believed to improve immunity function has minimal impact in relieving the common cold, according to research by the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health released Monday.

The study, published in this month's Annals of Internal Medicine, found that echinacea reduced the duration of the cold by seven to 10 hours. Bruce Barrett, lead researcher and associated professor of family medicine suggested that was not considered a significant decrease.

December 22, 2010

The European Food Safety Authority has granted GlaxoSmithKline a positive opinion for a health claim related to its "toothkind" drinks, according to BeverageDaily.com, an online news service.

PARMA, Italy — The European Food Safety Authority has granted GlaxoSmithKline a positive opinion for a health claim related to its "toothkind" drinks, according to BeverageDaily.com, an online news service.

According to the report, the EFSA panel ruled that a cause-and-effect connection could be established between "toothkind" drinks and reduced demineralization, but only when they are consumed in place of high quantities of juice or sugary drinks.

December 22, 2010

The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus on Tuesday ruled that Procter & Gamble provided reasonable support for claims that Prilosec OTC provides “superior acid control” over a competing product, Prevacid 24HR. However, the NAD recommended P&G discontinue a comparative claim made in a context that doesn’t reference acid control, the review board added.

NEW YORK — The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus on Tuesday ruled that Procter & Gamble provided reasonable support for claims that Prilosec OTC provides “superior acid control” over a competing product, Prevacid 24HR. However, the NAD recommended P&G discontinue a comparative claim made in a context that doesn’t reference acid control, the review board added.

P&G’s Prilosec OTC claims were challenged by Novartis Consumer Health, maker of Prevacid 24HR. Claims at issue included:

December 21, 2010

Abbott has made a pact with a biopharmaceutical company to develop new cancer treatments by making small-molecule inhibitors.

ABBOTT PARK, Ill. — Abbott has made a pact with a biopharmaceutical company to develop new cancer treatments by making small-molecule inhibitors.

Under the terms of the agreement, Abbott will provide EpiTherapeutics with an up-front payment and will receive funding of research activities conducted at EpiTherapeutics. The biopharmaceutical company also is eligible, under certain conditions, to receive milestone payments as well as potential royalties on future revenues.

December 21, 2010

An Anglo-Swedish drug maker said it is discontinuing further development of a drug that is designed to prevent a respiratory virus that infects the lungs and breathing passages.

LONDON — An Anglo-Swedish drug maker said it is discontinuing further development of a drug that is designed to prevent a respiratory virus that infects the lungs and breathing passages.

AstraZeneca has requested the withdrawal of its pending biological license application for motavizumab from the Food and Drug Administration. Motavizumab is an investigational monoclonal antibody that could prevent serious respiratory syncytial virus disease.

AstraZeneca said it will incur a financial impairment charge of $445 million in fourth quarter 2010.

December 21, 2010

The Council for Responsible Nutrition on Monday announced plans for a joint education effort with the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Foundation to help raise the level of awareness within the supplement industry and with consumers about the valuable role of nurse practitioners in the quest for good health.

WASHINGTON — The Council for Responsible Nutrition on Monday announced plans for a joint education effort with the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Foundation to help raise the level of awareness within the supplement industry and with consumers about the valuable role of nurse practitioners in the quest for good health.

December 21, 2010

Bristol-Myers Squibb has signed a definitive licensing pact with Oncolys BioPharma, a privately held Japanese biotech company, that will give it control of a promising new HIV treatment.

NEW YORK and TOKYO — Bristol-Myers Squibb has signed a definitive licensing pact with Oncolys BioPharma, a privately held Japanese biotech company, that will give it control of a promising new HIV treatment.

December 21, 2010

A biopharmaceutical company exclusively will develop and commercialize oral formulations of a drug maker's insulins.

PRINCETON, N.J. — A biopharmaceutical company exclusively will develop and commercialize oral formulations of a drug maker's insulins.

Emisphere will be paid $57.5 million in potential product development and sales milestone payments by Novo Nordisk — of which $5 million dollars will be payable upon signing — as well as royalties on sales. Further financial details of the agreement were not disclosed.

December 21, 2010

Nearly one-third of pregnant women are not being screened by a laboratory test for gestational diabetes mellitus (gestational diabetes), according to a study of more than 900,000 American women published online Tuesday on the Obstetrics and Gynecology site.

MADISON, N.J. — Nearly one-third of pregnant women are not being screened by a laboratory test for gestational diabetes mellitus (gestational diabetes), according to a study of more than 900,000 American women published online Tuesday on the Obstetrics and Gynecology site.

December 21, 2010

A healthcare accrediting organization is revising three products in its Pharmacy Quality Management suite of programs.

WASHINGTON — A healthcare accrediting organization is revising three products in its Pharmacy Quality Management suite of programs.

URAC said its pharmacy committee approved revisions to its mail service, specialty pharmacy, and workers' compensation and property and casualty for pharmacy benefit management accreditation programs. The products revised include:

  • Mail-service pharmacy, version 2.0;

  • Specialty pharmacy, version 2.0; and

December 20, 2010

Drug maker Amylin Pharmaceuticals has submitted the first of a series of sections of a regulatory approval application for a biotech drug to treat patients with a rare lipid disorder.

SAN DIEGO — Drug maker Amylin Pharmaceuticals has submitted the first of a series of sections of a regulatory approval application for a biotech drug to treat patients with a rare lipid disorder.

December 20, 2010

Drugs for bacterial infections and cancer, and one that could help shape regulations for biosimilars, are featured in the Food and Drug Administration’s annual "Generic Drug Roundup."

SILVER SPRING, Md. — Drugs for bacterial infections and cancer, and one that could help shape regulations for biosimilars, are featured in the Food and Drug Administration’s annual "Generic Drug Roundup."

The roundup is an annual highlighting of what the agency considers the most significant generic drug approvals.

December 20, 2010

Just a few months after launching its free delivery program, Kerr Drug on Monday said it will continue the service into the New Year.

RALEIGH, N.C. — Just a few months after launching its free delivery program, Kerr Drug on Monday said it will continue the service into the New Year.

The delivery program allows Kerr Drug customers to call their prescriptions in to the store pharmacist and request the prescription be delivered to their home or office and may add any other item from the store to their delivery list, which also can be delivered free of charge.

December 20, 2010

Drug makers King Pharmaceuticals and Acura Pharmaceuticals have submitted a regulatory approval application to the Food and Drug Administration for an opioid pain reliever.

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Drug makers King Pharmaceuticals and Acura Pharmaceuticals have submitted a regulatory approval application to the Food and Drug Administration for an opioid pain reliever.

The two drug makers announced Tuesday the submission for Acurox (oxycodone hydrochloride), an immediate-release tablet for relief of moderate to severe pain.

The tablets use Acura’s aversion technology, designed to deter abuse of the drug by dissolving or crushing the pills.

December 20, 2010

CVS Caremark's MinuteClinic has entered into an agreement with the National Patient Safety Foundation to become the nation's first retail clinic provider to implement the Ask Me 3 health literacy program.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark's MinuteClinic has entered into an agreement with the National Patient Safety Foundation to become the nation's first retail clinic provider to implement the Ask Me 3 health literacy program.

MinuteClinic will launch the program in early 2011 in its approximately 500 medical clinics located inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in 26 states and the District of Columbia.

December 20, 2010

The healthcare industry could see an “extreme makeover” next year, according to a new report by PwC.

NEW YORK — The healthcare industry could see an “extreme makeover” next year, according to a new report by PwC.

The research firm’s "Top Health Industry Issues of 2011" report, based on a nationwide survey of 1,000 adults in the United States, identified six major issues facing health organizations:

  1. Record spending on health information technology will drive demand for skilled professionals in this area, increased roles for chief information officers and industry consolidation.

December 20, 2010

A study by the Government Accountability Office confirmed that the health-reform law enacted earlier this year established a more reasonable reimbursement level for pharmacies dispensing generic drugs to patients covered by Medicaid. But pharmacy retailers still face the continued threat of further Medicaid cuts at the state level, the independent pharmacy lobby warned Friday.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A study by the Government Accountability Office confirmed that the health-reform law enacted earlier this year established a more reasonable reimbursement level for pharmacies dispensing generic drugs to patients covered by Medicaid. But pharmacy retailers still face the continued threat of further Medicaid cuts at the state level, the independent pharmacy lobby warned Friday.

December 20, 2010

Natural personal care brand Tom's of Maine is encouraging mobile dental clinics nationwide to apply for $20,000 in program funding as part of the manufacturer's annual Dental Health For All program.

KENNEBUNK, Maine — Natural personal care brand Tom's of Maine is encouraging mobile dental clinics nationwide to apply for $20,000 in program funding as part of the manufacturer's annual Dental Health For All program.

The Dental Health for All program was created to award dental clinics that make a difference in their communities by ensuring underserved communities have access to quality oral health care.

December 17, 2010

Community-based healthcare models, and the nurse practitioners who work within them, are particularly helpful in assisting diabetes patients with such underlying health conditions as depression, according to a recent study published on Nurse.com.

NEW YORK — Community-based healthcare models, and the nurse practitioners who work within them, are particularly helpful in assisting diabetes patients with such underlying health conditions as depression, according to a recent study published on Nurse.com.

December 17, 2010

A link may exist between diabetes and the use of inhaled corticosteroids to treat asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, according to published reports.

NEW YORK — A link may exist between diabetes and the use of inhaled corticosteroids to treat asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, according to published reports.

HealthDay News reported that researchers analyzed data on 380,000 patients in Quebec, finding a 34% increase in the rate of new diagnoses of diabetes and progression of the disease among those who used inhalers, with greater risk among those using higher doses.