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Last Updated
April 19, 2017
NEWSROOM > Latest News > Prior to 2015
Current | 2016 News | 2015 News | Prior to 2015

December 30, 2014
FDA Proposes Rule to Require Electronic Rx Drug Labels
An FDA draft rule would require pharmaceutical manufacturers to distribute prescribing data for
healthcare professionals electronically. "FDA is taking this action to ensure that the most current
prescribing information for prescription drugs will be available and readily accessible to
healthcare professionals at the time of clinical decision making and dispensing," the agency
stated.  The electronic distribution requirements of this proposed rule would not apply to patient
labeling (including patient package inserts and Medication Guides), or to prescribing information
accompanying promotional labeling, which would continue to be provided in paper form.  Comments on
the proposed rule, identified by Docket No. FDA-2007-N-0363, are due March 18, 2015.
December 24, 2014
Senate Special Committee on Aging advocates increased generic utilization
The U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging unveiled a new bipartisan report earlier this week that
focuses on ways to increase the use of generic drugs within the Medicare Part D program.  The
committee is calling on the Government Accountability Office to examine what is behind recent price
increases for certain generic drugs like heart medication digoxin, which has been on the market for
years. The issue of generic drug price spikes has recently attracted attention from the Justice
Department and the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Subcommittee on Primary
Health and Aging. 
Specifically, the Special Committee on Aging’s report outlines a series of policy recommendations
that include:

  • Providing incentives to prescription drug plan sponsors who increase generics use;
  • Finding innovative ways to expand generic drug usage among low-income subsidy beneficiaries;
  • Increasing education of beneficiaries and health professionals on the safety, effectiveness and cost benefits of generic medications
  • Improving investigations of questionable pharmacy billing practices that thwart efforts to incentivize generics.
  • The committee’s findings were part of a comprehensive two-year review that analyzed drug plan formularies, pharmacy billing, physician prescribing practices and plan sponsor programs to incentivize generics use. (Source: DSN.com) See NCPIE Related: Promoting better health outcomes through improved adherence.
    December 18, 2014
    Looking for Rx Disposal Site Near You? Search Tool Now Available
    The AWARXE® Prescription Drug Safety Program supports the proper disposal of medications as a vital
    component in preventing accidental or intentional misuse of prescription drugs. To help visitors to
    www.AWARErx.org  more easily find disposal locations in their area, AWARXE has launched a
    location-based search tool. Typing an address, city, state, or zip code into the website’s new
    search tool will provide patients with a list and map of the closest medication disposal sites. Law
    enforcement organizations, civic centers, and pharmacies are the most common sites where
    prescription drugs can be disposed of in a manner that is safe for family, friends, and the
    Medication disposal sites typically accept prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, and
    vitamins. Until October 2014, controlled substances (CS) were required to be disposed of in
    locations where law enforcement was present. New regulations from Drug Enforcement Administration
    (DEA) provide more disposal options for consumers, including allowing disposal of CS at pharmacies
    registered with DEA as authorized collectors. Check with local disposal sites for details about
    dropping off CS. If local medication disposal sites are not available, AWARXE recommends following
    local or Food and Drug Administration guidelines for disposing of unwanted medications.  The
    AWARXE® Prescription Drug Safety Program is brought to you by the National Association of Boards of
    Pharmacy Foundation™. 
    December 17, 2014
    NSAIDs: Questions to Ask Your Health Care Provider
    Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a group of drugs that are used to relieve pain,
    reduce fevers and provide anti-inflammatory effects for swelling and redness. They are commonly
    used to treat headaches, muscle soreness, back pain, cramps, joint pain or aches from a cold. They
    are sold over the counter and may be prescribed at higher doses. The most common NSAIDs are
    aspirin, ibuprofen (such as Advil and Motrin) and naproxen sodium (such as Aleve).  If you take
    NSAIDs, here are some questions you may want to discuss with your health care professional.
    •	What ailments can NSAIDs treat?
    •	What are the differences among the various NSAIDs?
    •	Is one type better for treating certain types of pain than another?
    •	What dosage do you recommend for me?
    •	What are the most common side effects of NSAIDS?
    •	What should I do if my pain gets worse or I notice side effects?
    •	How long can I safely take this NSAID?
    •	Is it safe to combine this NSAID with another pain reliever, such as another NSAID or acetaminophen?
    •	Can NSAIDs affect other medications that I'm taking?
    •	Is it safe to give NSAIDs to my children?
    •	Is it safe to take NSAIDs during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
    •	Is it safe to drink moderately while taking NSAIDs?
    December 11, 2014
    New Guidelines Supporting mL for OTC Liquid Medicine Dosing
    The Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) Board of Directors recently approved changes to
    CHPA’s voluntary guidelines addressing dosing of liquid pediatric over-the-counter (OTC) medicines.
     Key changes to the voluntary guidelines include: 
    • Deleting “spoon” labeling (i.e., teaspoon, tablespoon) on dosing directions and dosing devices,
    • Specifying use of “mL” only in dosing directions and on devices, and
    • Deleting the provision in dosing directions of a definition of any volumetric unit of measure
    (i.e., mL = milliliter).
    The updated guidelines replace the previous version of this document approved in November 2009 that
    specifies mL as the preferred unit of measure.
    The changes are supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) PROTECT
    (Preventing Overdoses and Treatment Errors in Children Taskforce) Initiative, who partners with the
    CHPA Educational Foundation on the UpandAway.org safe medicine storage campaign. 
    In addition, the National Council on Prescription Drug Programs has also recommended a move to “mL
    only” labeling (for prescription liquid medicines), and a recent FDA draft guidance document
    addressing issues aimed at enhancing safe use of OTC pediatric liquid acetaminophen products also
    specifies that dosing directions should be provided in mL only