AzPA Pharmacy Flash
Sep. 25, 2013

Pharmacists take to Twitter in global Tweet-a-Thon Oct. 3

On Oct. 3, AzPA wants pharmacists to take a moment to tweet about the real things they are doing or have done to help patients, other health professionals and their communities that day. More

Health insurance marketplace open enrollment — Information for pharmacists
Open enrollment for the health insurance marketplaces — commonly referred to as exchanges — is fast approaching. Patients will be able to access the exchanges as of Oct. 1. It is important that you are armed with information to provide to your patients who may come to you with questions. Please follow the below links to download information to educate yourself and/or print for distribution in your pharmacy. Uninsured patients should be informed that the cost of the plans in the marketplaces could be less expensive due to federal subsidies.

10 Facts about the Marketplaces for Providers
10 Facts about the Marketplaces for Patients
Protect Yourself from Fraud in the Marketplaces
Things to Consider when Choosing a PlanMore

Prevention and Control of Seasonal Influenza with Vaccines: 'Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices - United States, 2013-2014'
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
This report updates the 2012 recommendations by CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices regarding the use of influenza vaccines for the prevention and control of seasonal influenza.More

Residency symposium and workshop: Developing, Expanding and Improving Residency Training Programs in Arizona

Friday, Oct. 18
Register today!

Save the date — AzPA Anticoagulation Certificate Program

Completely revised, the AzPA Anticoagulation Certificate Program will be presented Oct. 25. Registration will be open in early September.More

Need CE? AzPA Fall Pharmacy Conference: Expanding the Partnership of Pharmacy Care

Date: Saturday, Oct. 26.
This conference offers 6.0 contact hours (0.60 CEUs).More

Big Pharma replaces innovation with acquisition
By Mike Wokasch
Big Pharma, including Big Biotech, has executed about 130 mergers or acquisitions in each of the past couple of years. The overwhelming majority of deals designed to fill depleted Big Pharma pipelines with more novel and innovative technologies in later stages than their own research and development had been able to produce. If Big Pharma is relying on others to do drug discovery, how deep does the discovery pipeline have to go to be indefinitely sustainable?More

Antibiotics recommended for all toddlers with ear infections
Pharmacy Times
In a research letter published online in JAMA Pediatrics, researchers recommend that all children aged 6 months to 2 years diagnosed with acute otitis media be treated with antibiotics, despite recent guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics that recommend otherwise. More

How 'technovigilance' can help to save lives in hospitals
Medical News Today
Electronic data routinely gathered in hospitals can be used as a warning system for missed doses of prescribed medicine and making improvements to patient safety, says a new study. A team from the Universities of Leicester and Birmingham found that the secondary use of data from an electronic prescribing and decision support system in an English hospital led to a "substantial and sustained" reduction in rates of missed or delayed doses of medicines. More

Census Bureau reports: 48 million Americans remain uninsured
Kaiser Health News
The rate of uninsured Americans dropped slightly for the second consecutive year in 2012, from 15.7 percent to 15.4 percent, largely a result of more people enrolling in Medicare and Medicaid, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. The closely watched report found that about 48 million Americans were uninsured in 2012, down from 48.6 million in 2011, a change the agency said is not statistically significant. The report is the last look at the uninsured before the major coverage expansions of President Barack Obama's health law take effect in January.More

Pertussis vaccines: Is there a best?
During the 1990s, the United States gradually moved from administering the whole-cell pertussis vaccine to using exclusively the acellular pertussis vaccine. It has become apparent, however, that waning immunity provided by the DTaP vaccine requires booster vaccinations. Currently, patients 11 years of age or older should receive a pertussis booster with a vaccine that contains a reduced amount of acellular component.More

FDA sets rules for smartphone medical apps
HealthDay News
The FDA recently drew a line between which smartphone medical apps it will regulate and which ones it will not, saying it will focus only on those that turn the phone into an actual diagnostic tool. "Today, mobile apps are fast becoming a staple of everyday life," Dr. Jeffrey Shuren, director of the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said during a news conference. "Although many mobile apps pertain to health, we are only continuing our oversight for a very small subset of those mobile apps."More

Pricing glitch afflicts rollout of online health exchanges
The Wall Street Journal
Less than two weeks before the launch of insurance marketplaces created by the federal health overhaul, the government's software can't reliably determine how much people need to pay for coverage, according to insurance executives and people familiar with the program. Government officials and insurers were scrambling to iron out the pricing quirks quickly, according to the people, to avoid alienating the initial wave of consumers.More

Statins may do little for kidney disease patients
Pharmacy Times
The medications may lower cholesterol levels in advanced chronic kidney disease patients, but they do not appear to reduce the number of cardiovascular events and may interact with other drugs the patients are taking. More

CVS bans doctors 'over-prescribing' pain meds
Drug Topics
In response to the federal crackdown on prescription fraud, CVS Caremark has told physicians it believes over prescribe controlled substances to take their business elsewhere. More

Study: Cancer drug may be helpful for diabetes
HealthDay News
The cancer drug Zaltrap could help treat diabetes, suggest findings from research using mice. Scientists say they've identified a molecular pathway involved in the development of diabetes, and also found that the drug can regulate this pathway.More

Statins may do little for kidney disease patients
Pharmacy Times
The medications may lower cholesterol levels in advanced chronic kidney disease patients, but they do not appear to reduce the number of cardiovascular events and may interact with other drugs the patients are taking. More

What not to prescribe: APA list aims to make patients safer
The American Psychiatric Association has released a list of specific uses of common antipsychotic medications that are potentially unnecessary and sometimes harmful. "As clinicians, we know we can improve the care we deliver by engaging our patients in conversation about their care. The recommendations from APA released today provide valuable information to help patients and physicians start important conversations about treatment options and make informed choices about their healthcare," APA President Jeffrey Lieberman said in a statement.More

Antibiotic resistance: Urgent action needed to stave off potentially dire consequences
American Pharmacists Association
The report "Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2013" characterizes antibiotic resistance as a complex problem with potentially dire consequences if left unattended. CDC reported that at least 2 million individuals per year in the United States get infections that are resistant to antibiotics, and 23,000 die because of these infections. However, during at telebriefing, Dr. Tom Frieden, CDC director, characterized these numbers as "a bare minimum, a very conservative estimate."More

Compatibility of commonly used IV drugs
Pharmacy Practice News
This clear and concise compatibility chart can be a useful tool in helping to deliver safe, high-quality IV therapy to patients.More