Issue 11-22-2010

Final AMP rule marks big victory for Rx

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Community pharmacy groups won a major victory earlier this month in their continuing battle to stem reductions in pharmacy reimbursement. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a final rule that withdraws provisions of the Medicaid pharmacy reimbursement formula under the average manufacturer price (AMP) model. The National Association

Medicaid fight flares up in Washington

SEATTLE — A move by Washington state officials that could result in the loss of prescription drug benefits for about 500,000 adults whose prescriptions are covered by Medicaid has been described as a “perilous situation” by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores. NACDS is working with its members and other allies to develop and

BioScrip names Smith chief executive

ELMSFORD, N.Y. — Richard Smith has been promoted from president and chief operating officer to chief executive officer at BioScrip Inc. Plans call for Smith to take the chief executive reins at the pharmacy operator January 1. He will replace current chairman and chief executive officer Richard Friedman, who will step down as chief executive

Same-store growth proves difficult

NEW YORK — Same-store sales growth has been hard to come by for the nation’s largest pharmacy chains of late, but business prospects for mass retailing overall look a bit brighter heading into the holidays. Walgreen Co. and Rite Aid Corp. both saw declines in comparable-store sales for October. CVS Caremark Corp., which doesn’t report

Navarro bolsters executive team

MIAMI — Navarro Discount Pharmacy has strengthened its management team with the hiring of three new executives. The Miami-area drug store chain has named Kevin Shiplett as senior vice president of wholesale and business development, Paul DiBrito as director of real estate and construction and Emilio Yepez as director of e-commerce. “The addition of these

Online Care service goes live at Rite Aid

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid Corp. has launched Rite Aid Online Care, a new service that enables patients with chronic conditions to engage in live, interactive consultations with specially trained Rite Aid pharmacists via the Internet. Patients can access Rite Aid Online Care, unveiled earlier this month at the American Diabetes Association Expo in

Pharmaca forms integrative health advisory board

BOULDER, Colo. — Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy has established an Integrative Health Advisory Board. Members of the panel, all medical doctors, will contribute their expertise to help Pharmaca inform consumers, health care professionals and the media about safe, effective use of integrative medicine. According to the pharmacy chain, integrative medicine encourages people to “fully engage in

Duane Reade clinics receive boost

NEW YORK — Walk-in health clinics at Duane Reade can now accept Medicare payments for routine health services provided to senior citizens. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has certified New York Walk-In Medical Group to receive payments for services under the Medicare program. The medical practice group runs Duane Reade’s DR Doctor On-Premises

NACDS asks FDA to raise standards for drug info

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has called on the Food and Drug Administration to improve the usefulness of medication information that patients get with prescription drugs. NACDS outlined its views in a recent letter to the agency. The letter supplemented testimony that was delivered by the association at an FDA

Cohen recalls Duane Reade’s emergence

Some 51 years ago — in late 1959 to be precise — Eli Cohen, a 33-year-old entrepreneur with a retailing background that leaned heavily to apparel, opened a 500-foot “cut-rate” store on Broadway, between Duane and Reade streets, in Manhattan. The store mainly sold health and beauty aids, and its appeal, at a time when

Election results create uncertainty for Rx

The Republican tidal wave that swept through the nation’s political landscape earlier this month altered the balance of power in Washington and many state capitols and, in the process, created a greater degree of uncertainty for retail pharmacy operators. Propelled by voters dissatisfied with bleak economic conditions, Republicans gained 60 seats in the House of