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Reliance on Pharmacies for Vaccination and other Services Reaches All-time High
Sep 16 2021

Reliance on Pharmacies for Vaccination and other Services Reaches All-time High

If there was ever any doubt, findings from a new national survey seem to validate the role of pharmacists in providing patient services that go beyond traditional dispensing. According to the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Pharmacy Study, for the first time, more than half of pharmacy customers said they had used health and wellness services during the past year. The survey also found that patients who made use of pharmacy-offered services tended to spend more while in the pharmacy, and had a higher sense of customer satisfaction than patients who did not receive services.

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Ready or Not – Here Comes Flu Season
Sep 02 2021

Ready or Not – Here Comes Flu Season

Although the American public got somewhat of a reprieve last year from influenza, with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reporting "unusually low" flu activity, the agency is taking a "full steam ahead" approach as the 2021-2022 flu season approaches. The CDC advises that last year's reduced flu season could actually result in a more severe outbreak this year, "Reduced population immunity due to lack of flu virus activity since March 2020 could result in an early and possibly severe flu season," the agency wrote on its website.

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Back-to-School Update: Vaccine Eligibility, Boosters, and Mitigation
Aug 20 2021

Back-to-School Update: Vaccine Eligibility, Boosters, and Mitigation

School bells are ringing across the nation, and this year's back-to-school preparations are likely to include supplies that go beyond traditional things like notebooks, pens, and lunchboxes. For the second year in a row, parents, students, teachers, and staff members will need to include precautions related to the COVID-19 virus. As school districts across the country, along with colleges and universities, finalize protocols and practices, pharmacists will continue to serve as leading sources of information, vaccines, prescriptions, and approved treatments.

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Pharmacy Leaders Cite DIR Fees and Continuation of COVID-19 Authorizations in Meeting with HHS Secretary Becerra
Jul 29 2021

Pharmacy Leaders Cite DIR Fees and Continuation of COVID-19 Authorizations in Meeting with HHS Secretary Becerra

In mid-March, when Xavier Becerra was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to lead the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) issued a congratulatory statement, noting Becerra's history of standing up for independent pharmacies while serving as attorney general of California. "We are grateful for this support and are eager to work with him and others in the Biden administration," NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey said.

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Pharmacists at the Forefront of Efforts to Improve COVID-19 Vaccination Rates
Jul 19 2021

Pharmacists at the Forefront of Efforts to Improve COVID-19 Vaccination Rates

In an early July press briefing, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases revealed the startling fact that more than nine out of ten Americans who died from COVID-19 during the previous month were unvaccinated. "Millions of Americans are still unvaccinated and unprotected," Fauci said in remarks reported by The Hill. "And because of that, their communities are at risk, their friends are at risk, the people they care about are at risk."

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CMS Reveals Astonishing 91,500 Percent Increase in DIR Fees. PrimeRx™ Can Help Pharmacies Plan for Impact
Jun 30 2021

CMS Reveals Astonishing 91,500 Percent Increase in DIR Fees. PrimeRx™ Can Help Pharmacies Plan for Impact

You have to go all the way to page 242 of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) fiscal year 2022 budget to find information about direct and indirect renumeration fees (DIR fees), but once there, the information is truly shocking. The document reads, "The data show that pharmacy price concessions, net of all pharmacy incentive payments, grew more than 91,500 percent between 2010 and 2019." And there you have it. Pharmacies have long known that DIR fees were increasing at an alarming rate, and dramatically affecting their bottom lines, but who knew it was by 91,500 percent?

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Summer 2021: There's Much to Celebrate, But Don't Forget the Bug Spray and Sunscreen!
Jun 28 2021

Summer 2021: There's Much to Celebrate, But Don't Forget the Bug Spray and Sunscreen!

In a mid-June issue of The New York Times, readers were greeted with the type of banner-like headline usually reserved for momentous events like a presidential election or global calamity. "'A Momentous Day': New York and California Lift Most Virus Restrictions," the headline blared, announcing that two of the nation's more populated states had largely rolled back COVID-19-related restrictions, following the vaccination of more than 70 percent of adults. As the Times' exuberant headline makes clear, there is much to celebrate this year. Americans who spent Summer 2020 largely tethered to their homes, unable to travel to favorite vacation destinations, attend summer camps, or enjoy other rites of summer, seem eager to make up for lost time.

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New Resources to Facilitate Pharmacy Reimbursements for COVID-19 Vaccinations
May 28 2021

New Resources to Facilitate Pharmacy Reimbursements for COVID-19 Vaccinations

A recent report by NBC news focused on the physical, mental, and economic toll that many independent pharmacists have experienced as a direct result of their efforts to administer COVID-19 vaccinations. In most cases, pharmacists told reporters that while the exhausting days and mounds of paperwork have certainly been an impediment, the far more serious concern came when they tried to get reimbursed for the vaccines. In fact, the report noted, the lack of reimbursement has become so severe, that many pharmacies have been forced to reconsider whether they would be able to continue to serve as vaccinators.

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Pharmacists – and PrimeRx™ – Can Have a Role in Addressing Patient Vaccine Hesitancy
May 20 2021

Pharmacists – and PrimeRx™ – Can Have a Role in Addressing Patient Vaccine Hesitancy

New Jersey will give residents a free beer for getting a COVID-19 vaccine. The New York Yankees are offering a free ticket. Ohio will enter residents in a lottery for the chance to win an eye-popping $1 million. And Maryland is giving state employees a $100 cash reward. And then there are the media personalities. Late night comedy shows, Tik Tok videos and Instagram posts are full of A-and B-list celebrities pleading with Americans to roll up their sleeves for a COVID-19 vaccine. Despite these herculean efforts, a sizeable portion of the population – about 40 percent – say they are either a "maybe" (18 percent) or an outright "no" (22 percent) when asked about their likelihood of getting a vaccine.

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Revenue Generation Ideas for Today's Pharmacy – Beyond Dispensing
Apr 23 2021

Revenue Generation Ideas for Today's Pharmacy – Beyond Dispensing

Research by AmerisourceBergen found almost 80% of pharmacists anticipate playing a greater role in patient care and becoming a more integral part of patient health care teams. Currently, pharmacists say they spend just a tenth of their time counseling patients, as dispensing-related requirements take priority. This gap between how pharmacists could be interacting with patients and how they actually spend their time illustrates what Deloitte calls an "underutilization" of today's pharmacists. Deloitte forecasts a fundamental change in the role of the pharmacist as technological developments alleviate many of the manual, time-consuming responsibilities associated with dispensing.

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Retail Trends 2021: How the Pandemic is Changing Shopper Demands
Apr 21 2021

Retail Trends 2021: How the Pandemic is Changing Shopper Demands

In the final video in our three-part series with Pointy from Google, we're taking a look at how the pandemic has changed shopper demands - and how you can be there for shoppers at every stage of the buying journey.

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April 24 is "National Drug Takeback" Day
Apr 16 2021

April 24 is "National Drug Takeback" Day

Medicine cabinets across the country are set for a spring cleaning. On National Drug Takeback Day scheduled for Saturday, April 24, 2021, Americans can take advantage of the opportunity to discard supplies of expired, leftover, and unneeded medications.

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Patients Increasingly Turning to Mobile Apps for 24/7 Pharmacy Access
Apr 08 2021

Patients Increasingly Turning to Mobile Apps for 24/7 Pharmacy Access

Just two years ago in mid-2019, market research company J.D. Power released findings of its annual "U.S. Pharmacy Study," which found 20 percent of customers reported using a pharmacy mobile app. Interestingly though, the survey also found that patients who did use an app were significantly more satisfied with their pharmacy experiences.

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Retail trends of 2021: Ethical Shopping and Conscious Consumerism
Apr 06 2021

Retail trends of 2021: Ethical Shopping and Conscious Consumerism

In the second video of our series with Pointy from Google, we're looking at the rise of ethical shopping.

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Big Retail Trend of 2021
Mar 18 2021

Big Retail Trend of 2021

At PrimePOS™, we’re always interested in bringing you useful information that can help you to grow your store.

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NCPA Files Lawsuit to End DIR Fees
Mar 16 2021

NCPA Files Lawsuit to End DIR Fees

The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as a way to gain relief from the federal agency's purported failure to address the issue of direct and indirect renumeration fees (DIR fees). The lawsuit was filed in January 2021, with then-HHS Secretary Alex Azar listed as the plaintiff.

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Biden Administration Urged to Enlisted Retired Pharmacists for COVID-19 Vaccinations
Mar 04 2021

Biden Administration Urged to Enlisted Retired Pharmacists for COVID-19 Vaccinations

In mid-February, President Joe Biden traveled to a Pfizer manufacturing facility in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where he addressed employees engaged in manufacturing the company's COVID-19 vaccines. As part of his remarks, President Biden discussed his administration's efforts to procure additional vaccine supplies and increase the number of individuals working towards delivering vaccines to patients.

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2D Barcoding is a Legal Requirement for Pharmacies - and PrimeRx™ makes Compliance Fast and Easy
Jan 27 2021

2D Barcoding is a Legal Requirement for Pharmacies - and PrimeRx™ makes Compliance Fast and Easy

When the U.S. Congress passed the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) in 2013, the underlying goal was to build a network to identify and trace certain prescription drugs as they were distributed throughout the United States. Technology, of course, was always intended to be an integral part of the new network, as stakeholders across the health care industry worked to improve visibility within the nation's drug supply, and protect U.S. consumers from potentially dangerous drugs.

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Automated Immunization Reporting – a Critical Step in COVID-19 Vaccine Administration
Jan 22 2021

Automated Immunization Reporting – a Critical Step in COVID-19 Vaccine Administration

In early September, as federal and state officials worked feverishly to finalize plans to distribute and administer an as-yet-unapproved COVID-19 vaccine, the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) posted an urgent plea to its membership. Please sign up for your state's immunization reporting registry.

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Supreme Court Rules Unanimously in Landmark PBM Case
Dec 18 2020

Supreme Court Rules Unanimously in Landmark PBM Case

Community pharmacies received a much-appreciated year-end gift when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously (8-0) in their favor in the landmark Rutledge v. Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) case, which will have a direct impact on pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) practices. According to the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA), the issue before the Court was the extent to which the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), which regulates private employee benefit plans, preempts states from regulating the amount that PBMs pay pharmacies to dispense medications covered by employee-sponsored health plans.

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Pharmacists Can Help Allay Patients' Concerns About COVID-19 Vaccination
Dec 17 2020

Pharmacists Can Help Allay Patients' Concerns About COVID-19 Vaccination

When news broke in late-November that more than half of New York City firefighters said they would not get the COVID-19 vaccine, it seemed to drive home the deep reluctance many Americans have about the vaccine. The firefighters' sentiments were echoed just a week later, when an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey found roughly half of Americans were wither not sure if they would get the vaccine, or flat-out said they would not. Now that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has greenlighted administration of the vaccine, these findings highlight the need to educate skeptical Americans about the safety of the treatments, and the importance of having widespread vaccination among the U.S. population.

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Pharmacies Face November 27 DSCSA Product Identifier Compliance Deadline
Nov 24 2020

Pharmacies Face November 27 DSCSA Product Identifier Compliance Deadline

When the U.S. Congress passed the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) in 2013, it outlined a timeline for implementation of key provisions among various stakeholders, with full implementation expected by 2023. Several of those implementation dates have been affected by the COVID-19 public health emergency, with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration postponing certain deadlines and issuing clarifying guidance with regard to others, For the nation's pharmacies this means a three-year postponement for some provisions, while a November 27, 2020 deadline remains in effect for compliance with certain product identifier requirements.

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Information is Key as Pharmacies Prepare for COVID-19 Vaccine
Nov 23 2020

Information is Key as Pharmacies Prepare for COVID-19 Vaccine

In a mid-November television appearance, Dr. Vivek Murthy, former-Surgeon General and recently-named co-chair of the Biden Administration's coronavirus task force, referred to distribution of an expected COVID-19 vaccine as "one of the most challenging parts" of the entire pandemic response. "We have vaccinated Americans for many years," he noted, "but the campaign we are going to have to build to vaccinate enough people to create herd immunity in America will be the most ambitious vaccination campaign, I believe, in our country's history."

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BIG SAVINGS IN THE BIG CITY
Nov 18 2020

BIG SAVINGS IN THE BIG CITY

Twenty minutes. That's how long it used to take staff members at Priyank Patel's New York City-area pharmacies to address instances when a patient's medication was either not covered by a benefits plan or was prohibitively expensive.

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How Real-Time Prescription Benefit Solution by Surescripts helps NYC Pharmacy Owner with Improved Adherence Rates and Faster Refills
Oct 30 2020

How Real-Time Prescription Benefit Solution by Surescripts helps NYC Pharmacy Owner with Improved Adherence Rates and Faster Refills

Twenty minutes. That's how long it used to take staff members in Priyank Patel's New York City-area pharmacies to address instances in which a patient's medication was either not covered by a benefits plan, or was prohibitively expense. But now that his pharmacies are operating the Surescripts Real-Time Prescription Benefit Solution, processing time has been cut to just five minutes.

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Does Your Pharmacy have a Color Blind Staff Member? Windows 10 Can Help.
Oct 02 2020

Does Your Pharmacy have a Color Blind Staff Member? Windows 10 Can Help.

The National Eye Institute estimates as many as 32 million Americans are colorblind, with the condition affecting roughly one in eight men and 0.5 percent of the female population. The Institute describes color blindness as "seeing colors differently than most people" and "having difficulty telling the differences between certain colors."

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PrimeRx™ Users Can Access Surescripts® Solution - "Real-Time Prescription Benefit" Visibility Means No More Surprises at the Pharmacy Counter
Sep 23 2020

PrimeRx™ Users Can Access Surescripts® Solution - "Real-Time Prescription Benefit" Visibility Means No More Surprises at the Pharmacy Counter

Last year, the Fresno Bee published a report highlighting the tragic situation of a local woman who had been unable to receive cancer medications prescribed by her oncologist. According to the report, the doctor wanted the patient to use medication that "didn't follow the standard protocol sequence of medications," as outlined in the patient's pharmacy benefit manager's (PBM) guidelines. Sadly, as the article pointed out, this patient is one of thousands of documented cases of patients denied their medications for similar reasons. For this particular patient, each denial resulted in delays as the decision was challenged. In one instance, the patient was forced to wait nearly tow months before the drug was ultimately approved.

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Flu Season is Here – Is Your Pharmacy Ready?
Sep 09 2020

Flu Season is Here – Is Your Pharmacy Ready?

In an August 2020 interview on the JAMA Network, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert R. Redfield, M.D. warned that the coming flu season, combined with the existing COVID-19 pandemic, "could be one of the most complicated pubic times we've had."

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Customer Service Matters. Technology Can Help Your Pharmacy Go the Extra Mile
Aug 24 2020

Customer Service Matters. Technology Can Help Your Pharmacy Go the Extra Mile

Among the findings of the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Pharmacy Study was a strong preference among consumers for "traditional" pharmacy experiences, with expectations of face-to-face interactions with pharmacists to discuss medications and other health-related issues. This is good news for physical pharmacies, as e-commerce options become more prevalent, and threaten to disrupt the way in which Americans acquire their medications and health-related supplies. "Customers enjoy visiting their brick-and-mortar pharmacy and get a great deal of satisfaction from speaking directly with pharmacists," the survey analysis noted. "However," it noted, "the potential for technology disruption is there."

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Pharmacists Can Now Sing a New Tune When Patients Ask About Cost
Aug 10 2020

Pharmacists Can Now Sing a New Tune When Patients Ask About Cost

Thanks to Surescripts new Real-Time Prescription Benefit tool, pharmacists can finally address prescription cost concerns with access to patient-specific benefit information, out-of-pocket prescription costs, and therapeutic alternatives at the point of dispensing.

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As COVID-19 Surges, Pharmacies Up Their Game with Increased Services, Including Testing
Jul 13 2020

As COVID-19 Surges, Pharmacies Up Their Game with Increased Services, Including Testing

In late March, as New York State continued to serve as the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew Cuomo called on pharmacies across the state to offer home delivery services. In doing so, he was likely unaware that more than 75 percent of the nation's pharmacies were already providing a delivery option to patients, many at no additional charge.

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Pharmacy Technology - A Crucial Tool in Combatting Adverse Drug Interactions
Jun 18 2020

Pharmacy Technology - A Crucial Tool in Combatting Adverse Drug Interactions

Pharmacists are often referred to as "the last line of defense" in ensuring patient safety in myriad ways ranging from opioid abuse to medication non-adherence to harmful drug interactions. And indeed, the nation's pharmacists are well-deserving of this title, as they play increasingly important roles in managing patient heath, and in helping to secure the safety of the nation's drug supply chain. In some instances though, pharmacists might be forgiven for thinking they are fighting an uphill battle. Nowhere is the more evident, than among elderly patients, who often take multiple medications each day, often prescribed by several physicians.

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PrimeRx™ - Even More Functionality Through Partner Interfaces
Jun 09 2020

PrimeRx™ - Even More Functionality Through Partner Interfaces

What would have happened if Steve Jobs had decided to limit iPhone apps to only those developed internally by Apple technicians? Fortunately we'll never know, because among Job's many visionary accomplishments, was the understanding that he and his contemporaries were building something exciting, but that could be made better by opening up the process to all great ideas.

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Nothing Says You Care Like an Automated Medication Adherence Reminder...
May 19 2020

Nothing Says You Care Like an Automated Medication Adherence Reminder...

When Jack Dunn of Georgia-based Jasper Drug Store was asked how his pharmacy was keeping in touch with patients during this period of quarantine and social distancing, he was quick to cite examples of staff members going the extra mile. "We put together a list of names, and those people we haven't heard from, we call them," he explained. "We had one [staff member] pick up groceries for someone. Another went to check on a patient in hospice who had fallen through the cracks and was in terrible shape."

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Pharmacies Get No Respite from DIR Fees During Pandemic
May 08 2020

Pharmacies Get No Respite from DIR Fees During Pandemic

Pharmacists have shown up every day during the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring uninterrupted access to medications, counseling patients, and in some states, administering COVID-19 testing. But as invaluable as pharmacists have been during this unprecedented period, something a little less welcome has also shown up - DIR Fees.

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Pharmacy Management During the COVID-19 Pandemic:  Use Your Technology Tools for Improved Efficiency
Apr 22 2020

Pharmacy Management During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Use Your Technology Tools for Improved Efficiency

As pharmacies continue to deal in real time with fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, most have done a yeoman's job in improvising ways to continue to serve patients while prioritizing safety and wellness. While the term "social distancing" didn't even exist a year ago, pharmacies have become models of efficiency in maintaining safe distances through the widespread use of point-of-sale tables, plex-glass barriers, one-way aisles and, of course, delivery services. While these solutions are helping to maintain distance between patients and employees, pharmacies likely have another tool at their that can further assist during this unprecedented time.

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LTC Pharmacies Find a Lifeline in Technology Management Systems, including PrimeRx™
Apr 06 2020

LTC Pharmacies Find a Lifeline in Technology Management Systems, including PrimeRx™

In a 2020 benchmark report targeted at pharmacy start-ups, the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) suggests pharmacies can "diversify their revenue while focusing on the health care needs of their local communities," by offering long-term care (LTC) services. Specifically, the report was referring to the growing need for pharmacy services among millions of patients - including an estimated 12 million senior citizens - living in long-term care residential facilities including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, rehabilitation centers, and group homes.

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Will-Call Bin Management Offers Pharmacy Workflow Visibility, Improved Efficiency
Mar 10 2020

Will-Call Bin Management Offers Pharmacy Workflow Visibility, Improved Efficiency

"Organized chaos" might be a polite way to describe the will call areas that exist in many pharmacies. We all know the drill. A customer arrives at the pharmacy to retrieve a prescription, tells a staff member the name associated with the prescription, and then watches the staffer hunt through a sea of identical bags, looking for the right one. Sometimes the package is right where it's supposed to be. But other times, the staff member seems to go on a scavenger hunt throughout the dispensing area, looking for the patient's prescription, which the "system" says has been filled.

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PrimeRx™ Pharmacies can access Coronavirus Information via Elsevier's Resource Center
Feb 12 2020

PrimeRx™ Pharmacies can access Coronavirus Information via Elsevier's Resource Center

As the global health community continues to mobilize in response to the Coronavirus outbreak, it has become clear that information - clear, accurate and timely information - is among the most important tools in addressing the deadly illness.

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Happy Birthday to America's First Pharmacist!
Jan 09 2020

Happy Birthday to America's First Pharmacist!

January 17 marks the 314th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Franklin, one of America's founding fathers, and an individual who left his mark in more ways than most people probably realize.

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National Pharmacist Day is January 12 - But We Appreciate Them All Year Long
Dec 10 2019

National Pharmacist Day is January 12 - But We Appreciate Them All Year Long

Once again we take a day from our busy schedules to celebrate our nation's pharmacists, the more than 310,000 men and women who dedicate their professional lives to ensuring drug safety and the highest levels of patient care. January 12 is officially-designated as "National Pharmacist Day," and provides an excellent opportunity to reflect on the critical role these individuals perform.

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Nothing Says you Care Like a Flu Shot Reminder
Nov 11 2019

Nothing Says you Care Like a Flu Shot Reminder

It’s back! Once again flu season has arrived, right on schedule, with a promise to cause havoc for millions of Americans, young and old. Many will look to their pharmacists for information about the best course for preventing the flu, which of course begins with flu vaccination.

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Mobile Apps Well-Positioned to Improve Patient Interactions with Pharmacies
Oct 15 2019

Mobile Apps Well-Positioned to Improve Patient Interactions with Pharmacies

A 2019 survey by J.D. Power found significantly higher satisfaction levels among consumers who use a pharmacy's mobile app, versus those who do not. "Only 20 percent of customers use a pharmacy's mobile app, but those who did have satisfaction scores as much as 23 points higher than those who do not," the survey analysis reported. As the number of pharmacies implementing mobile apps increases, this technology will become a competitive differentiator, as consumers embrace the convenience and come to expect the service.

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Have You Thanked a Pharmacist Today? October is American Pharmacists Month!
Sep 30 2019

Have You Thanked a Pharmacist Today? October is American Pharmacists Month!

While pharmacists deserve daily gratitude and respect for their work, we especially appreciate these hardworking individuals during October, which is "American Pharmacists Month." The American Pharmacists Association (aPhA) began the October tradition in 2004 as a way to celebrate and recognize the important contributions pharmacists have made. Since then, the month-long celebration provides an opportunity to promote awareness among the public, patients, policy makers and other stakeholders about the many services pharmacists provide beyond their traditional role of dispensing medicines. So hat's off to America's dedicated pharmacists, for the vital role they have in promoting health and well-being, and for the extra steps they take – on a daily basis – to engage with patients and ensure medication safety and adherence.

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October 15 is National Pharmacy Technician Day!
Sep 25 2019

October 15 is National Pharmacy Technician Day!

What would our pharmacies be like without the hardworking technicians who dedicate their professional lives to assisting patients and ensuring safe, accurate disbursement of prescription medications? Pharmacy technicians are regularly described as “indispensable,” “essential,” and “critical,” to today's pharmacy operations, and are taking on expanding roles in hospital, health-setting and retail pharmacies nationwide. "In many ways," Pharmacy Technician Certification Board CEO Everett B. McAllister, MPA, RPh told Pharmacy Times, “technicians are the backbone of the pharmacy operation, and they are instrumental to a successful pharmacy." It's fitting then, that we take a day – October 15 – to celebrate the nation's 420,000 pharmacy technicians, and thank them for their dedication and tireless hours of service.

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Let's take a Day to Celebrate Women in Pharmacy!
Aug 30 2019

Let's take a Day to Celebrate Women in Pharmacy!

A few years ago, a room was designated in the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) headquarters, located in Washington, D.C., to commemorate the significant contributions women have made to the pharmacy profession. Although it may seem that women have a commanding role in today's pharmacies – and indeed they do – it wasn't always this way. Which is why it's important to take a moment to celebrate the innovative women who broke down barriers and blazed the way for today's dedicated women pharmacists.

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The Best Defense Against an Intrusive Pharmacy Audit is…a Pharmacy Technology System
Aug 19 2019

The Best Defense Against an Intrusive Pharmacy Audit is…a Pharmacy Technology System

Pharmacy audits can come at any time, and in many forms, ranging from a less-intrusive telephone audit to a highly-invasive field audit, which can consume dozens of hours in preparation, plus days spent meeting with auditors and addressing points of inquiry. Hanging over all audits, of course, is the threat of financial repercussions, including clawbacks of fees determined to have been paid in error, penalties, and even contract cancellations.

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World Pharmacists Day Shines Light on Medication Safety
Aug 15 2019

World Pharmacists Day Shines Light on Medication Safety

September 25 has been designated “World Pharmacists Day 2019” by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP). And while the day will certainly allow for much-deserved reflection on the many important services provided by pharmacists, FIP organizers have announced that “safe and effective medicines for all” will be the key theme of the day.

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What would happen to your Pharmacy’s Data if the Power Went Out?
Jul 25 2019

What would happen to your Pharmacy’s Data if the Power Went Out?

Would an abrupt disruption in power affect patient records, receipt of incoming electronic prescriptions, claims processing, or pharmacy financial records? And if the outage lasted for an extended period, would it even be possible to remain open, or dispense medications to patients?

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Technology Leads the Way as Specialty Pharmacies Adapt to Changing Workflow, Patient Requirements
Jul 15 2019

Technology Leads the Way as Specialty Pharmacies Adapt to Changing Workflow, Patient Requirements

Analysis by Express Scripts found patient/pharmacist consultations in a “traditional” pharmacy tend to last an average of about two minutes. But in a specialty pharmacy, clinical consultations average 15 to 18 minutes for patients with serious diseases including rheumatoid arthritis, hepatitis C and cancer.

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Is Your Pharmacy e-Care Plan Ready?
Jun 21 2019

Is Your Pharmacy e-Care Plan Ready?

A “nationwide movement” is the term used by the Community Pharmacy Enhanced Services Network to describe the more than 2,100 community pharmacies that have recently joined forces via “clinically integrated networks.”

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Lessons from the Measles Outbreak – Using your Pharmacy Pulpit to Promote Immunizations
May 31 2019

Lessons from the Measles Outbreak – Using your Pharmacy Pulpit to Promote Immunizations

Although news of the measles outbreak no longer garners front-page attention, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported that as of early June 2019, more than 980 cases had been reported across 26 states. This was an increase of almost 300 cases over just a month earlier.

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Talking to Patients about Generic -- and other -- Drug Price Increases
May 22 2019

Talking to Patients about Generic -- and other -- Drug Price Increases

In mid-May, Connecticut Attorney General William Tong appeared on CBS’s “60 Minutes” to detail what he described as an “industry-wide conspiracy” to “fix” generic drug prices.

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Time for a “Pharmacy ‘Take Back’ Day?”
Apr 29 2019

Time for a “Pharmacy ‘Take Back’ Day?”

Almost 460 tons of unused and expired prescription drugs were collected nationwide during the October 2018 “National Take Back Day,” an initiative by the Drug Enforcement Agency to encourage people to rid themselves of unwanted or outdated medications.

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The Best Defense Against an Intrusive Pharmacy Audit is . . . a Pharmacy Technology System
Apr 18 2019

The Best Defense Against an Intrusive Pharmacy Audit is . . . a Pharmacy Technology System

A popular blog written by an Iowa pharmacy owner recently detailed the author’s experiences with audits of his business. “Over my career as a pharmacy owner, we have faced over $1,000,000 worth of audited claims, and the PBMs have attempted to charge back over 10% of that amount,” the blogger wrote.

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PrimeRx™ Named 2019 Pharmacy Software Company of the Year
Apr 15 2019

PrimeRx™ Named 2019 Pharmacy Software Company of the Year

Micro Merchant Systems through its PrimeRx™ pharmacy management system has been named “2019 Software Company of the Year” by the American Pharmacy Purchasing Alliance (APPA).

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Pharmacists Find New Revenue – and Patient Goodwill – through Added Services
Mar 30 2019

Pharmacists Find New Revenue – and Patient Goodwill – through Added Services

Let’s start with the good news. Pharmacists continue to be among the most trusted professions, with 2018 Gallup findings reporting only nurses and medical doctors received higher marks for “honesty and ethical standards.” And 2017 research by CVS Health found almost two-thirds of patients think of their local pharmacist as part of their health care team.

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Using Technology to Minimize Risk of Expired Drugs
Mar 29 2019

Using Technology to Minimize Risk of Expired Drugs

Every pharmacy manager dreams of a well-managed inventory in which drug levels are synchronized with patient demand, inventory remains on the shelf for a minimal amount of time, and patients in need of high-cost or rare drugs regularly pick up their medications. The reality though is most pharmacists regularly find themselves holding inventories of expired medications which, in most cases, impose a cost to the pharmacy’s bottom line.

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Pharmacists Deserve their Positions on Patient Care Teams
Mar 08 2019

Pharmacists Deserve their Positions on Patient Care Teams

With baseball season back in full swing, and fans across the nation focused on their favorite teams and players, a compelling question to consider might be : What if your team took the field, but decided to leave its first baseman, or shortstop on the bench? Chaotic, reckless and ridiculous are outcomes that likely come to mind.

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Don’t Let Prescription Abandonment Wreak Havoc with Your Pharmacy Inventory
Feb 01 2019

Don’t Let Prescription Abandonment Wreak Havoc with Your Pharmacy Inventory

According to the 2018 Generic Drug Access & Savings report, roughly eight percent of prescriptions for generic drugs, and 21 percent of prescriptions for brand-name drugs are abandoned at the pharmacy. That is to say, prescriptions are received by the pharmacy, filled, but never picked up.

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Prescription Sync Modules Help Improve Adherence and Patient Outcomes
Jan 28 2019

Prescription Sync Modules Help Improve Adherence and Patient Outcomes

Last year a New York Times article referred to the high incidence of medication non-adherence as “an out of control epidemic,” and noted as many as 30 percent of all prescribed medications either go unfilled, or unused. The article cited “staggering statistics,” including an estimated $290 billion in added health care costs, and as many as 125,000 deaths each year that might be avoided with a proper medication regime.

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New PrimeRx™ Exception Report Ensures Accuracy and Integrity of E-Prescription Records
Jan 15 2019

New PrimeRx™ Exception Report Ensures Accuracy and Integrity of E-Prescription Records

According to Becker’s Hospital Review, a leading source for healthcare industry news, 77% of all prescriptions were delivered electronically in 2017, which represents a 4% increase from 2016.

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Using your Pharmacy Technology System to Manage Inventory, and Control Costs
Dec 21 2018

Using your Pharmacy Technology System to Manage Inventory, and Control Costs

For the past several years, the National Community Pharmacists Association has tracked the rate at which pharmacies are utilizing technology for various workflow functions. In 2017, findings showed steady growth in the use of key capabilities including point-of-sale, automated dispensing, mobile commerce/signature capture, and telephone IVR (interactive voice response).

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When it comes to Pharmacy Configuration, Leave Room for Soap and Toothpaste
Dec 14 2018

When it comes to Pharmacy Configuration, Leave Room for Soap and Toothpaste

Although the typical pharmacy’s footprint has not changed over the years, expectations about how that space should be utilized have evolved dramatically. Today’s pharmacies are likely to include larger, more comfortable waiting areas; designated spaces for immunization or blood pressure clinics; and private areas for patient counseling, among other things.

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FDA Takes Aim at E-Cigarettes  – And Pharmacists Take Note
Nov 15 2018

FDA Takes Aim at E-Cigarettes – And Pharmacists Take Note

According to the 2018 National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS), vaping increased nearly 80 percent among high schoolers and by 50 percent among middle schoolers in the past year, with one in five students saying they have used an e-cigarette in the past month

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Improved Patient Adherence could be a Quick Text or Phone Call Away
Nov 01 2018

Improved Patient Adherence could be a Quick Text or Phone Call Away

Last year Walgreens conducted a study of pharmacy patients enrolled in Medicare Prescription Drug Plans (Part D) who were considered non-adherent in following their medication protocols.

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What’s New in Patient and Pharmacy Technology?
Oct 31 2018

What’s New in Patient and Pharmacy Technology?

Apple CEO Tim Cook wowed the world when he revealed his company’s Series 4 Apple watch, which includes features to detect when a wearer has fallen, an abnormal heart pattern, and can summon emergency help when needed. “Outcome-changing,” and “Life-saver,” were among the terms used to describe the effect Apple’s technology breakthrough could have on patient care.

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Amazon bought PillPack and CVS merged with AETNA – What’s Next in the Changing Pharmacy Landscape?
Oct 15 2018

Amazon bought PillPack and CVS merged with AETNA – What’s Next in the Changing Pharmacy Landscape?

Pharmacy-related issues have been very much in the headlines, with analysts full of predictions about how the latest news will affect the industry, Wall Street, consumers, and pretty much everything-and-everyone in between. A cursory look though, at recent pharmacy-and-pharmaceutical headlines, reveals a consistent trend in favor of patient-centered, technology-based changes.

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Technology-Based Reports add Efficiency, Visibility to Pharmacy Workflow
Sep 19 2018

Technology-Based Reports add Efficiency, Visibility to Pharmacy Workflow

Legendary management consultant Peter Drucker is widely credited with saying, “What gets measured gets managed.” But could Drucker, who began his career almost 80 years ago, ever have anticipated a world in which 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created every day?

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Nothing Says “I Care” Like a Pharmacist-Administered Influenza Vaccination
Aug 31 2018

Nothing Says “I Care” Like a Pharmacist-Administered Influenza Vaccination

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) uses the term “high severity” to describe the 2017-2018 influenza season, which resulted in an abnormally high number of deaths and hospitalizations.

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EpiPen Shortage Persists as Students Head Back to School
Aug 16 2018

EpiPen Shortage Persists as Students Head Back to School

The EpiPen and EpiPen Jr. devices deliver the lifesaving drug epinephrine during severe allergic reactions, and are often carried by students, and stocked in school health offices.

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The One Thing Amazon Can’t Offer Pharmacy Customers…
Jul 19 2018

The One Thing Amazon Can’t Offer Pharmacy Customers…

“Disruptive,” “gamechanger,” and “the start of something big,” were among the terms used to describe the impact Amazon.com’s planned acquisition of online pharmacy PillPack may have on the prescription drug industry.

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Pharmacies Stand Ready with EPCS Technology in Place
Jul 17 2018

Pharmacies Stand Ready with EPCS Technology in Place

As federal and state legislators consider options for addressing the nation’s growing opioid and prescription drug abuse crisis, it seems that one tool already in the arsenal is being largely overlooked: Electronic Prescribing of Controlled Substance (EPCS) technology.

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2018 Pharmacy School Grads Face Changing Industry, Tightened Job Market
Jun 29 2018

2018 Pharmacy School Grads Face Changing Industry, Tightened Job Market

This spring, roughly 15,000 students received degrees from the nation’s 138 pharmacy schools, and are set to put their knowledge and training to use in various capacities. But what does the current job market look like for recent graduates, and how has the role of the pharmacist changed in recent years?

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Community Pharmacy eCare Plan
Jun 20 2018

Community Pharmacy eCare Plan

The number of patients – usually senior citizens – who take five or more drugs has become so significant, that the practice now has its own term. The term is “polypharmacy,” and according to 2016 research reported in JAMA Internal Medicine, more than 35 percent of older adults were taking at least five medications, up from 30 percent in 2011. Further, almost two-thirds reported using dietary supplements, including herbs and vitamins, and nearly 40 percent took over-the-counter drugs.

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It’s Hurricane Season. Will Your Patients be Ready?
Jun 14 2018

It’s Hurricane Season. Will Your Patients be Ready?

Water. Food. Batteries. Flashlight. Four things that top the list of most people when preparing to hunker down for a threatening storm. This is precisely the situation in which millions of Gulf Coast residents found themselves last year, when Hurricane Harvey bore down, dumping 52 inches of rain and forcing tens of thousands of residents to flee their homes.

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Health Age Calculator
May 31 2018

Health Age Calculator

The Health Department is excited to launch New York City's very own Heart Age Calculator, an online tool to help New Yorkers determine their risk for heart disease and stroke. The calculator is designed for adults ages 30 - 74 to understand their risk for cardiovascular disease and to obtain customized recommendations on how to become healthier. Knowing our heart age is a valuable first step for many of us to gain awareness of our risk factors and develop a plan to improve our health.

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Eliminating DIR Fees Remains Front Burner Issue for Pharmacists
May 28 2018

Eliminating DIR Fees Remains Front Burner Issue for Pharmacists

When hundreds of community pharmacists converged on Capitol Hill in April 2018, the group had a clear message for lawmakers:

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Pharmacists see the end to Pricing “Gag Rule,” at least for Medicare Patients
May 13 2018

Pharmacists see the end to Pricing “Gag Rule,” at least for Medicare Patients

One of the more frustrating restrictions on the pharmacist-consumer relationship has long been the pharmacist’s inability to tell a customer about lower-cost drug purchasing options.

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Trump’s Blueprint to Lower Drug Prices Healthcare
May 11 2018

Trump’s Blueprint to Lower Drug Prices Healthcare

"One of my greatest priorities is to reduce the price of prescription drugs."

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Patients see Increased Role of Pharmacy in Managing their Health
May 08 2018

Patients see Increased Role of Pharmacy in Managing their Health

While in-store blood pressure testing and flu vaccines have become fairly common in U.S. pharmacies, recent research shows patients are increasingly open to allowing pharmacies to perform an even greater range of health care services. This is further validation of the increased role pharmacies are playing in consumer healthcare management

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Five Considerations in Selecting a Pharmacy Software System
May 08 2018

Five Considerations in Selecting a Pharmacy Software System

You’ve made the decision. Your pharmacy needs to automate. But with dozens of pharmacy software systems to choose from – with different capabilities and price points – how can you choose the right system for your business?

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Are Your Customers Waiting too Long for Prescriptions?
May 06 2018

Are Your Customers Waiting too Long for Prescriptions?

Few things are more distressing to a pharmacist than to peer out at the pharmacy waiting area and see an obviously ill patient waiting for a prescription to be filled. It’s especially heartbreaking when the patient is a child, or a senior citizen. And while most patients understand it takes time to process and fill a prescription

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