In the News: March 2, 2018


Every week we are going to bring you some of the latest articles on pharmacy we found interesting, in hopes you will too!

"WASHINGTON D.C (News release) - The United States filed a civil complaint and a motion seeking a preliminary injunction against Cantrell Drug Company and its co-owner and Chief Executive Officer, James L. McCarley Jr., to stop the manufacturing and distribution of adulterated drugs, the Department of Justice announced on Thursday."

"In the five years since contaminated injections compounded at a Massachusetts pharmacy led to more than 70 deaths, sterile compounding oversight laws and rules have been strengthened, but there is more room for inspections and oversight at the state level ..."

"Dive Brief:

  • State governments have stepped up their oversight of drug compounding in recent years, yet resource limitations may be hamstringing regulators from even more thorough inspections of traditional pharmacies, according to a new report.

  • In 2015, the District of Columbia and 26 states required routine inspections of compounding pharmacies at least once a year. But by 2017, the number had fallen to 22 states plus the nation's capital, The Pew Charitable Trust's report found. "This may be due to resource constraints. Representatives from all four state boards of pharmacy interviewed for this report described the need for more resources and inspection capacity," Pew wrote.

  • Drug compounding refers to when a physician, local pharmacist or outsourcing facility makes patient-specific medicines. While the medicines offer a valuable source of treatment for many patients, they're also risky because they aren't usually made in accordance with the Food and Drug Administration's strict quality standards. In 2012, 76 people died and nearly 800 more got sick after steroid injections at the New England Compounding Center became contaminated ."

  • Pharmacists Fight for Reimbursement Rates

"BELLA VISTA, Ark. - Some pharmacies across the state are losing money due to what they consider to be a lack of regulation between insurance providers and drug manufacturers."

"Independent pharmacy groups in several states are sick of the low insurance reimbursement rates that middlemen, known as pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, pay them after drugs are dispensed and they’re pushing for greater oversight of the drug middlemen."

"WASHINGTON — As consumers face rapidly rising drug costs, states across the country are moving to block “gag clauses” that prohibit pharmacists from telling customers that they could save money by paying cash for prescription drugs rather than using their health insurance."

"Virtually all the media coverage of the national drug problem revolves around prescription opioids or the clandestine version of carfentanil and fentanyl. There has been good reason for this massive coverage, as we are in the midst of the biggest drug epidemic in our history. Thousands are dying from overdoses of prescription opioids and their illicit counterparts, and despite the efforts of law enforcement, prevention, and rehabilitation, the scourge continues.

But in the meantime, other drugs continue to cause deaths ..."