Archive for July, 2011

Pharmacist Shares Hard Lessons from the Joplin Tornado

By Chris Linville, Managing Editor, America’s Pharmacist

As an Oklahoma native, Steven Charles is used to seeing his share of stormy weather. So on May 22, when Charles noticed some swirling clouds and heavy winds outside his home in Oswego, Kan., he wasn’t overly concerned.

Continue reading ‘Pharmacist Shares Hard Lessons from the Joplin Tornado’

Pharmacists Speaking Out on the Need for PBM Audit Reform

By Kevin Schweers

A recent Washington Post story brought high-profile attention to the growing concerns of many community pharmacists with regard to pharmacy benefit managers’ (PBM) seemingly unfair audit practices. As compelling as that one account is, it’s indicative of an expanding audit imbalance between PBM auditors and small pharmacies.

Continue reading ‘Pharmacists Speaking Out on the Need for PBM Audit Reform’

Express Scripts and Medco Merge Mail Order, Specialty Pharmacies and, of Less Importance, PBM Operations

By Zachary French

George Paz was named Chairman and CEO of the new Express Scripts Holdings, Inc., the largest mail order pharmacy in the United States.  Listening in on the Express Scripts/Medco conference call with analysts to discuss the details of the merger, one would never know that Mr. Paz had moved Express Scripts from dead last among the Big 3 PBM-owned mail order pharmacies – with about a 20 percent market share – to top of the charts with a projected mail market share of 59 percent.  This is the current combined mail order market share of ESI and Medco.

Continue reading ‘Express Scripts and Medco Merge Mail Order, Specialty Pharmacies and, of Less Importance, PBM Operations’

Independent Pharmacy Closures Illustrate Need for Pro-Patient, Pro-Pharmacy Policies

By Kevin Schweers

A number of recent news articles sum up both the challenges many independent pharmacists face to care for patients as well as the need for reforms to put patients first, as two bills in Congress would do.

Continue reading ‘Independent Pharmacy Closures Illustrate Need for Pro-Patient, Pro-Pharmacy Policies’

Rebirth Amid Destruction: Joplin Pharmacy Re-Opens Days After Devastating Tornado

by Chris Linville, Managing Editor, America’s Pharmacist

After a massive tornado tore through Joplin, Mo., on Sunday night, May 22, the path of wreckage in the aftermath was hard to fathom.

Continue reading ‘Rebirth Amid Destruction: Joplin Pharmacy Re-Opens Days After Devastating Tornado’

In Joplin Tornado’s Wake, Local Pharmacists Stepped up to Meet Patient Needs

by Chris Linville, Managing Editor, America’s Pharmacist

It’s been almost six weeks since that terrible day in Joplin, Missouri. As Tim Mitchell says, “Life there is consisting of rebuilding slowly.”

Continue reading ‘In Joplin Tornado’s Wake, Local Pharmacists Stepped up to Meet Patient Needs’

In Walgreens Dispute, Express Scripts Seeks Knockout Blow to Pharmacies – and Patients

By Zachary French

Walgreens recently announced that beginning January 2012 it would no longer participate in Express Scripts’ pharmacy networks.  Walgreens reportedly made this decision because Express Scripts reimbursements to its national chain of pharmacies are so low under the terms of the proposed new contract that the retail pharmacy giant thought it more reasonable to risk losing an estimated $5.3 billion in annual revenue generated from prescriptions filled by members of health plans that Express Scripts manages.

Continue reading ‘In Walgreens Dispute, Express Scripts Seeks Knockout Blow to Pharmacies – and Patients’


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