Magazine article Drug Topics

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Magazine article Drug Topics

Latelines

Article excerpt

N.C. board acts on 'excessive' dispensing

The North Carolina pharmacy board has adopted a rule on excessive Rx dispensing rates without spelling out what is excessive. The state is the first in the country to pass such a regulation. The board can discipline R.Phs. and pharmacies it feels are turning out Rxs at a pace that endangers the public health or safety. Effective July 1, the rule has not yet been used, said David Work, pharmacy board executive director. The rule is a response to pharmacist complaints about workload, including peak daily fill rates of 600 to 750 Rxs per R.Ph. at two independent pharmacies.

Ready for consultant R.Ph. week?

It's time to start preparing for National Consultant Pharmacist Week, Oct. 22-26. To aid pharmacists in promoting awareness about the important contributions consultant pharmacists make to the patients they serve, the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists has put together a promotional kit to help you get your message out. To obtain a copy of the kit, or for help in coordinating promotional events during National Consultant Pharmacist Week, contact ASCP at (703) 739-1300, ext. 136.

Wholesalers unite for independents

Thirty independent wholesalers nationwide have agreed to combine their clout to help their 15,000 independent pharmacy customers become profitable by offering new services and negotiating market-share rebates from drug manufacturers. Each wholesaler put up $50,000 to fund the Wholesale Alliance, said Harvey Tanenbaum, the Kinray Inc. executive v.p. who chairs the new group's marketing committee. "We want to make retail pharmacy profitable again," he said. "If we don't, our customers won't be around, so we won't be around."

NBC eyeing workload issue

The NBC-TV newsmagazine Dateline is researching the possibility of a prime time look at whether the pharmacist's increasingly heavy workload is leading to more medication errors and endangering the public. "That could be a good story for us," said an associate producer who contacted Drug Topics, which did a recent cover story on the issue. She added that she would like to contact R.Ph.s willing to discuss their workload experiences and issues, "hopefully on camera."

Legislation targets Rx plans

Health insurance plans could not economically penalize patients who get their Rxs from a community pharmacy rather than through mail order if a bill sponsored by Rep. Nita Lowey (D, N.Y.) becomes law. The measure would require public and private plans alike to provide equivalent benefits to both mail-order and local pharmacy patients. That is, if the plan makes a fixed or

percentage contribution to the cost of an Rx or requires a co-pay, it must be the same for patients using either type of pharmacy.

Booting butts doesn't hurt bottom line

Among independent pharmacies that no longer sell tobacco products, 88% reported no bottom line loss or an actual business boost after giving butts the boot, according to a survey by the California Medication Association's Pharmacy Partnership. Of the 54% of California pharmacies that do sell tobacco, an estimated 90% are chains and 27% are independents. Among independents who stock tobacco, only 38% think such sales are necessary revenues, and 52% are interested in more information about banishing the Marlboro man and the Camel he rode in on.

Vaccine approved for infants

Tripedia (diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccine adsorbed) has been

approved by the FDA for use in infants two, four, and six months of age and for the first booster dose at 15 to 20 months. Previously, the vaccine was approved for the fourth and fifth doses for immunization of children 15 months to seven years of age who had previously received three doses of whole cells DTP vaccine.

Co-pay stays in New York

The Pharmacists Society of the State of New York lost its appeal at the state's appellate court to overturn the state's requirement that pharmacists collect co-pays from Medicaid patients. …

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