Sunday, July 29, 2012

Drug Wholesaler, McKesson, to Pay States $151 Million to Settle Drug Pricing Allegations

McKesson to Pay States $151 Million to Settle Drug Pricing Allegations:

"McKesson Corp. (MCK) has agreed to pay California and 29 other states a total of $151 million to settle allegations that it inflated prescription drug prices, causing states' Medicaid programs to overpay pharmacy reimbursements by millions of dollars, according to the California Department of Justice.

The payment is in addition to an April settlement that had McKesson paying more than $190 million to the federal government to resolve similar claims."

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Senate committee reports pharmaceutical gray market fueled by unscrupulous pharmacies

Senate committee reports pharmaceutical gray market fueled by unscrupulous pharmacies | Drug Store News:

"According to the report, gray market drugs "leak" out of authorized distribution chains. "In more than two-thirds (69%) of the 300 drug distribution chains reviewed in the investigation, prescription drugs leaked into the gray market through pharmacies," the report read. "Instead of dispensing the drugs in accordance with their professional duties, state laws, and the expectations of their trading partners, these pharmacies resold the drugs to gray market wholesalers. Some pharmacies sold their entire inventories into the gray market. The wholesalers in turn sold their drugs — usually at significant markups — to other gray market companies.""

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Saturday, July 21, 2012

A Senior Moment: Health care fraud is rampant

A Senior Moment: Health care fraud is rampant - Chico Enterprise Record:

"Medicare fraud

Medicare fraud comes in many forms. Sometimes health care providers bill Medicare for services that were not performed, or bill for a higher level of service than was actually performed. In some cases charges are made for services that were unnecessary and costly. Some doctors have been known to sell prescriptions to patients for cash. Other unscrupulous doctors have lured patients to visit their offices for free services or gifts and then have stolen their insurance information and used it to file false claims.

A supplier can bill Medicare for equipment that was not needed or may charge for expensive equipment when a cheaper item was substituted. Some providers may bill Medicare for home medical equipment after it has been returned. The doctor for another one of my aunts who lives in assisted living was sending bills to Medicare for a piece of equipment that had sat in her room unused for nine months."

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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Florida Controlled Substance Distribution Reporting-Enforcement Actions to Begin for Non-Compliance

This article also has some useful Q & A.

Florida Controlled Substance Distribution Reporting-Enforcement Actions to Begin for Non-Compliance | Akerman Senterfitt - JDSupra:

"Once you engage in wholesale distribution of controlled substances, then reporting is required, even if it is a "0" report. The above prescription drug distributors must register with the DBPR Controlled Substance Reporting database (“CSR”) and submit monthly controlled substance distribution reports. These reports must be filed electronically with DBPR by the 20th day of the month following the month of the sale of the controlled substance. An online CSR account is required in order to submit the controlled substance information electronically.

According to the DBPR website, DBPR can take the following actions for non-compliance: . . . "

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Monday, July 16, 2012

2011 MDM Market Leaders: Top Pharmaceutical Wholesalers

A good read.

The article talks about the top-three market leaders (and the non-Big Three drug wholesalers), and the industry trends that they're facing.

2011 MDM Market Leaders: Top Pharmaceutical Wholesalers | 2011-05-26 | Modern Distribution Management:

"Three companies generate about 85 percent of all revenues from pharmaceutical wholesaling in the United States: AmerisourceBergen Corporation (NYSE:ABC), Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE:CAH), and McKesson Corporation (NYSE:MCK).

Total U.S. revenues from the drug distribution divisions of these Big Three wholesalers were $272.4 billion in calendar year 2010.

In addition to these three companies, there are a number of smaller primary and secondary drug wholesalers, including:" . . .

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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Q & A with AmerisourceBergen CEO Steven Collis

Q & A with AmerisourceBergen CEO Steven Collis:

"We are a behind-the-scenes company, so consumers will not be aware of us, nor should they if we are doing our job right. When I was buying a house, the people I was buying it from asked if I was sure I could afford the house. I said, “Yes, I’m the chief operating officer for AmerisourceBergen.” They said, “Well, who are they?” I said, “We are the largest revenue company in Pennsylvania.” They said, “No, you’re not.” In the financial community we’re well known but to the average consumer, we’re not. I met [Eagles owner] Jeffrey Lurie the other day and he had never heard of us.

I'll tell you what I told him. We ship about 25 percent of the top line drugs in the U.S. We ship to over 20,000 customers per day. Our customers are hospitals, retail pharmacies, physician offices, institutional pharmacies and they rely on us to get their products to them safely. Our strategy is to focus on providing more and more services up and down the channel on the pharmaceutical supply value chain."

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Friday, July 13, 2012

Fla. Chronic Pain Patients Unable to Get Prescriptions Filled

Fla. Chronic Pain Patients Unable to Get Prescriptions Filled | WFSU:

"“There isn’t a doctor, a pharmacist or a wholesaler that is in Florida that is not terrified of the Drug Enforcement Administration," he says.

And pain patients like John Gibson, who lives in Wakulla Co., say they are the unintended victims of the crackdown. Gibson contracted an infection while volunteering to help Hurricane Katrina victims; it's left him in chronic pain. He says, he  filed a complaint with the Florida health department when several pharmacists wouldn’t fill his pain med prescriptions."

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Walgreens/Boots - Largest pharmaceutical wholesale and distribution network

Article > Walgreens/Boots merger creates world's largest pharmacy:

"The new entity will have over 11,000 stores in 12 countries and enjoy "the largest global pharmaceutical wholesale and distribution network", with 370 distribution centres delivering to more than 170,000 pharmacies, doctors, healthcentres and hospitals in 21 countries. It will also be the world’s largest purchaser of prescription drugs and claims to have "unmatched supply chain and procurement expertise [and] a unique platform for growth in developed and emerging markets"."

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Co-owner of SoCal medical supply firms sentenced in Medicare fraud case

Co-owner of medical supply firms sentenced in Medicare fraud case - The Daily Breeze:

"The co-owner of two Southern California medical supply companies was sentenced Monday to 42 months in federal prison for attempting to con Medicare out of about $20 million through phony claims.

U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson also ordered 51-year-old Camillus Ehigie, a Nigerian citizen who lives in Woodland Hills, to pay $7 million in restitution and to serve three years of supervised release after completing his prison term, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Ehigie - who co-owned and operated Prosperity Home Health Services Inc., a home health agency, and Caravan Medical Supplies Inc., a durable medical equipment firm - pleaded guilty to multiple health care fraud charges.

A federal jury in Los Angeles found co-defendant Evans Oniha, 49, of Rancho Palos Verdes guilty last year of one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, four counts of health care fraud and one count of false statements relating to health care matters."

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

K-V sues FDA over Makena in fight for survival

K-V sues FDA over Makena in fight for survival | Reuters:

"FDA DILEMMA

The FDA normally issues warning letters to distributors of unapproved drugs, or may seize their products.

The FDA recently launched a drive to remove all unapproved drugs from the market due to safety issues, and encouraged companies to apply for formal clearance, but has not taken a hard line against the pre-term birth medications.

Patients and insurers preferred the pharmacy compounds, which cost $10 to $20 per injection versus the $1,500 K-V initially sought to charge for Makena after it was approved in February 2011.

K-V reportedly tried to stop pharmacies from compounding the drug by sending them letters saying they were violating the law and threatening to sue them."

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The case is K-V Pharmaceutical Company v. FDA, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia, No. 12-01105.
Learn more about the case at:   Complaint Filed in K-V v. FDA, case number 12-01105

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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Summer Energy Use Could Strain Power Grid, Lead to So Cal Outages

Summer Energy Use Could Strain Power Grid, Lead to Outages : Eastern Group Publications:

"The shutdown of a San Diego nuclear power plant could lead to outages this summer, especially if the Southern California region experiences extreme weather or emergencies, say energy utility officials.  Southern California Edison officials say events such as heat waves and wildfires could lead to both planned and unforeseen outages, especially now that the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant has been shut down due to a leak detected earlier this year in one of its generating units." . . .

"In the event of outages, Edison officials are also issuing safety tips, especially in the wake of tragedies from the windstorm, in which three members of one family in San Bernardino were killed by a live power line that broke and crashed into their backyard. No matter what the line looks like, it is better to assume that it is alive, and to avoid touching them, officials said. They also recommend that those with medical conditions that require the use of air conditioning or other electronic equipment sign up to their “medical baseline” or “critical care” list so that scheduled brownouts will skip their homes or buildings. Hospitals or people with in-home medical equipment are also required to have backup generating devices in case of unexpected outages."

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Providers of DME Ensure Independence and Safety during Extreme Weather and Power Outages

Providers of Durable Medical Equipment Ensure Independence and Safety during Extreme Weather and Power Outages - PR Newswire - The Sacramento Bee:

"During the recent extreme weather and power outages across the country, providers of durable medical equipment and services have been working alongside other first responders to ensure the safety of seniors and people with disabilities.

Millions of seniors and people with disabilities require some form of home medical equipment and services in the home, such as oxygen therapy, ventilators, hospital beds, or wheelchairs, says the American Association for Homecare."

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