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CMS mandate can result in wasted medication, survey finds | HHS diverts money for PPACA implementation | CEO is confident in CVS Caremark's ability to compete
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April 9, 2012
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Legislative & Regulatory News
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CMS mandate can result in wasted medication, survey finds
An Institute for Safe Medication Practices survey found that a CMS policy requiring hospital pharmacists to strictly follow the expiration date on labeling contributes to unnecessary medicine waste. Respondents pointed out that in some instances, updated, evidence-based compendia support extending shelf life. The institute hopes to meet with the CMS and FDA to discuss the survey results.
American Medical News (free content) (4/5) 
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HHS diverts money for PPACA implementation
HHS has transferred about $200 million to the IRS from a $1 billion fund for implementing the PPACA and plans to divert another $300 million this year, according to a congressional aide. The IRS officially requested $8 million to implement the health care law next year.
The Hill/Healthwatch blog (4/9) 
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PBM Industry News
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CEO is confident in CVS Caremark's ability to compete
CVS Caremark CEO Larry Merlo says he is confident in his company's ability to compete with newly enlarged pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts. CVS pharmacies picked up additional business after rival drugstore chain Walgreen failed to renew its contract with Express Scripts.
Barron's (free content) (4/7) 
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Drug Industry Spotlight
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Low participation renders drug monitoring program ineffective
California's voluntary prescription-monitoring program is largely ineffective in preventing drug abuse because few health care providers and pharmacies participate in the program, critics say.
The Bay Citizen (San Francisco) (4/8) 
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Senators press CMS to finalize sunshine law by June
Sens. Herb Kohl, D-Wis., and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, wrote a letter to CMS Acting Administrator Marilyn Tavenner asking the agency to release its final rule on the Sunshine Act no later than June so partial collection of data can begin. The legislation mandates that payments made by drug and medical device firms to doctors and other health care providers be reported to the CMS.
MassDevice (Boston) (4/6) 
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Doctors requesting e-Rx waivers still get fined
Some doctors who asked for hardship waivers from the CMS e-prescribing incentive program did not receive exemptions due to a backlog in processing their requests. The American Medical Association urged the agency to re-examine its penalty schedule after the CMS imposed a 1% penalty on doctors who failed to prescribe electronically at least 10 times in the first half of 2011.
American Medical News (free content) (4/9) 
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One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.
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PCMA is the national association representing America's pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), which administer prescription drug plans for more than 266 million Americans with health coverage provided through Fortune 500 employers, health insurance plans, labor unions, and Medicare Part D. PCMA is dedicated to enhancing the proven tools and techniques pioneered by PBMs that generate savings and access for consumers and payors.

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