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Pharmacy News

ASHP NewsLink for Aug. 23

Cheryl A.Thompson

BETHESDA, MD, 22 Aug 2005—The software for sending ASHP NewsLink has been offline since Aug. 16.

As soon as ASHP's information technology specialists finish checking the software for potential problems and weaknesses, ASHP NewsLink and other listserver-dependent services will resume transmitting e-mail.

Below is the ASHP NewsLink message for this week.


ASHP NewsLink is a weekly service provided exclusively to members of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). ASHP NewsLink delivers the latest breaking news and information to hospital and health-system pharmacists to help them keep abreast of issues affecting pharmacy practice.


ASHP NewsLink
August 23, 2005

In This Edition...
1) Election Deadline Approaches
2) Need for Pharmacy Managers, Experienced Frontline Pharmacists On the Rise
3) Long-Awaited Patient Safety Bill Enacted
4) New Heart-Failure Therapy Takes Race into Account
5) Infectious Diseases Expected to Capture Headlines, Attention
6) Oregon Enacts Prescription Law for Pseudoephedrine Drugs
7) Drug Regulatory Process Is Focused on Safety, Officials Claim
8) FDA Chief to Hold Public Forums in 3 Cities
9) FDA Finds Texas Flush Maker Violated Regulations
10) Nepafenac Approved for Pain Relief After Cataract Remova
11) Drug Shortage Center Updated
12) Pharm.D. Standards to Change
13) Studies Find Some Disparities in Health Care Have Disappeared
14) Cardiac Groups Prefer HF to CHF
15) State's Rule on Emergency-Contraceptive Dispensing Almost Done Deal
16) Marketing Guidelines Released for Medicare Part D Subcontractors
17) CMS Insists That Electronic Claims Be HIPAA Compliant
18) Self-Assess Your Hospital's Antithrombotic Therapy
19) Over 60 Years of Career Connections
20) Tell Your Story During National Hospital & Health-System Pharmacy Week
21) Get Online Tips for Conducting Quality Research
22) Register Early for Midyear Clinical Meeting for Chance to Win PDA


1) Election Deadline Approaches

Members who have not yet voted in the 2005 ASHP election of president, two members of the board of directors, and primary section chairs and directors-at-large have until Wednesday, Aug. 31, to make their preferences count. Follow the instructions on your mailed ballot to vote online or via mail. Online voting ends midnight ET on Aug. 31, 2005. Mailed ballots must be returned in the envelope provided and postmarked no later than Aug. 31, 2005. Questions should be directed to ashpelection@ashp.org or ASHP Customer Relations at 301-664-8643.


2) Need for Pharmacy Managers, Experienced Frontline Pharmacists On the Rise

Pharmacy manager vacancy rates are starting to creep upward again after several years of holding steady, according to the latest staffing survey conducted by ASHP.


3) Long-Awaited Patient Safety Bill Enacted

It has yet to be seen whether Congress will sufficiently fund legislation enacted on July 29 that allows for the creation of a national system for voluntary reporting of medical errors, or if the new law will spur an increase in error reporting, said Kasey Thompson, director of practice standards and quality for ASHP.


4) New Heart-Failure Therapy Takes Race into Account

The labeling for a new combination heart-failure product, said John E. Clark, president of the Association of Black Health-System Pharmacists, is "probably the only time I've seen where we've had a race-based indication for a use of a drug, but I do believe that this is probably not going to be the end of this."


5) Infectious Diseases Expected to Capture Headlines, Attention

Infectious disease specialists see the potential for both good news and bad as public health issues unfold over the coming year.


6) Oregon Enacts Prescription Law for Pseudoephedrine Drugs

Legislation signed Aug. 16 by Gov. Ted Kulongoski requires the Oregon State Board of Pharmacy to classify ephedrine, pseudoephedrine, and phenylpropanolamine—key ingredients used in the illegal manufacturing of methamphetamine—as Schedule III controlled substances by July 1.


7) Drug Regulatory Process Is Focused on Safety, Officials Claim

Although the office that approves medications for marketing in the United States has seven times more employees than the office that monitors the postmarketing safety of drugs, the Food and Drug Administration's regulatory process is not tilted, agency officials argued in July before an Institute of Medicine committee.


8) FDA Chief to Hold Public Forums in 3 Cities

Pharmacists and other health care providers, along with members of the general public, in Miami, Phoenix, and a suburb of Boston will have an opportunity this fall to ask the head of the Food and Drug Administration questions about the U.S. drug safety system.


9) FDA Finds Texas Flush Maker Violated Regulations

The Texas firm whose heparin and sodium chloride flush-solution syringes have been linked to at least 36 cases of bloodstream infection did not test the products for contamination and violated many other tenets of good manufacturing practice, according to a letter from the Food and Drug Administration.


10) Nepafenac Approved for Pain Relief After Cataract Removal

The Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved the marketing of nepafenac ophthalmic suspension for the treatment of ocular pain and inflammation associated with cataract-removal surgery.


11) Drug Shortage Center Updated

The drug product shortage bulletin on cefotetan disodium injection and cefoxitin sodium injection has been updated at the ASHP Drug Product Shortages Management Resource Center. Drug product shortage bulletins and drug product availability notices, such as the one for liothyronine tablets, are prepared by the University of Utah Drug Information Center and provided by ASHP through the support of Novation LLC.


12) Pharm.D. Standards to Change

The Accreditation Council for Pharmaceutical Education (ACPE) is prepared to change the professional competencies, knowledge base, and pharmacy practice experiences that future pharmacists must have when they graduate college with a Pharm.D. degree. Speak up now to influence the caliber of new graduates you may hire or work alongside in the future. "Draft Revision of ACPE Standards 2000 and Proposed Guidelines" is open for comment through Nov. 1. Help ASHP prepare its letter to ACPE by identifying the key points for commentary; send those ideas to Leila Mohassel (lmohassel@ashp.org) by Sept. 12. To provide personal comments directly to ACPE, send an e-mail to standards@acpe-accredit.org.
http://www.acpe-accredit.org/pdf/ACPEDraftRevisedStandardsandGuidelinesJune2005final.pdf


13) Studies Find Some Disparities in Health Care Have Disappeared

Blacks and women who had had a myocardial infarction received aspirin and a beta-blocker, but not reperfusion therapy with a fibrinolytic agent, in the hospital at about the same rates as white men, one group of researchers found. Other researchers found that, among Medicare managed care enrollees with diabetes, blacks had annual tests of glycosylated hemoglobin and low-density-lipoprotein cholesterol at about the same rates as whites but had poorer test results.
http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/short/353/7/671 (abstract)
http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/short/353/7/692 (abstract)


14) Cardiac Groups Prefer HF to CHF

The new guideline on the diagnosis and management of chronic heart failure from the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association wants clinicians to replace the term "congestive heart failure" with "heart failure." Not all patients, the medical societies said, have an overload of fluid in the lungs at heart at the time of their initial or subsequent evaluation.
http://www.acc.org/clinical/guidelines/failure/index.pdf


15) State's Rule on Emergency-Contraceptive Dispensing Almost Done Deal

The Illinois legislature last week passed a crucial hurdle in finalizing the governor's rule requiring pharmacies that stock oral contraceptives to dispense them "without delay" in response to a valid, lawful prescription. (Comments from the Board of Directors of the Illinois Council of Health-System Pharmacists were ignored, according to Council executive director Scott A. Meyers.)
http://www.suntimes.com/output/news/cst-nws-pharm17.html


16) Marketing Guidelines Released for Medicare Part D Subcontractors

Pharmacists who have contracts with Medicare Part D prescription drug plans can distribute marketing materials for those plans and display posters announcing contractual relationships, according to guidelines issued Aug. 15 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. But these pharmacists cannot accept enrollment applications and cannot in any way try to persuade Medicare beneficiaries to enroll in a specific plan.
http://www.cms.hhs.gov/healthplans/marketing/FINALMergedGuidelinesCMS8-151200pm.pdf (see pages 135-140)


17) CMS Insists That Electronic Claims Be HIPAA Compliant

Starting Oct. 1, any electronic Medicare claim that is not in the format required by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 will be rejected, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has decided. No more "contingency plan."
http://www.cms.hhs.gov/medlearn/matters/mmarticles/2005/MM3956.pdf


18) Self-Assess Your Hospital's Antithrombotic Therapy

Use the newest self-assessment survey from the Institute for Safe Medication Practices to examine your hospital's provision of antithrombotic therapy to patients. This national survey, which has a new deadline of March 1, has participants evaluate 125 characteristics that influence the safety of therapy with anticoagulants, thrombolytic agents, and other antithrombotics.
http://www.ismp.org/Survey/ASA/intro.htm


19) Over 60 Years of Career Connections

CareerPharm's Personnel Placement Service opens for service on Aug. 24. Visit http://pps.ashp.org to post jobs and resumes. Early-bird pricing is in effect until Oct. 17. Post early to maximize exposure and minimize costs.


20) Tell Your Story During National Hospital & Health-System Pharmacy Week

As you make plans to celebrate the first-ever National Hospital & Health-System Pharmacy Week, Oct. 23-29, don't forget that ASHP provides the materials you need to make the celebration really work in a health system or hospital setting. Check out the online resource center at http://www.ashp.org/pr/event/pharmweek.cfm for resources to help make your Pharmacy Week activity a memorable one.


21) Get Online Tips for Conducting Quality Research

Are you a new investigator, a residency preceptor, or a pharmacist interested in learning about the research process? Then you might be interested in the ASHP Foundation's newest resource for researchers: Residency Research Tips. Each week until Sept. 26, the ASHP Foundation will e-mail advice on how to conduct a high-quality research project. Sign up for these research e-tips by sending a message to dcobaugh@ashp.org. Past e-tips are available at http://www.ashpfoundation.org/Research/researchPubs.cfm.


22) Register Early for Midyear Clinical Meeting for Chance to Win PDA

Register online by Sept. 5 for the Midyear Clinical Meeting in Las Vegas and you will automatically be entered into a drawing for a chance to win a free personal digital assistant (PDA). The PDA, compliments of Skyscape, comes equipped with AHFS Drug Information. Use Skyscape and AHFS DI's comprehensive drug reference data to determine appropriate treatments and quickly check drug interactions--right in the palm of your hand.
http://www.ashp.org/meetings/midyear (click on "Registration" at top of page)


(c)Copyright 2005, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. All rights reserved.

 

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