February 14 Week in Review: Increase in Naloxone Dispensing Rates in Ohio Pharmacies; Southern Markets Shown to Increase in Flu Activity

Published Online: Friday, February 14th, 2020






This weekly video program provides our readers with an in-depth review of the latest news, product approvals, FDA rulings, and more. Our Week in Review is a can't miss for the busy pharmacy professional.

Nicole Grassano, Host: Hello and welcome to the Pharmacy Times News Network. I’m Nicole Grassano your host for our Pharmacy Week in Review.

A significant increase in naloxone dispensing rates was associated with the implementation of an Ohio law allowing pharmacists to dispense naloxone without a prescription, Pharmacy Times reported.

The study was conducted using a segmented regression analysis and evaluated the change in naloxone dispensing rates before and after the implementation of the Ohio state law.

The results showed that the number of naloxone orders dispensed after the policy was implemented increased by about 2000% in the Ohio Medicaid population.

Additionally, a significant increase was observed in the naloxone dispensing rate among the Ohio Medicaid population in counties with low employment and high poverty.

Walgreens’ January Flu Index report shows that southern markets with increased flu activity top the list for the first time this flu season, Contemporary Clinic reported.

Although flu activity has tapered off in the first few weeks of 2020, the final weeks of January showed a spike in activity.

Using retail prescription data from treating influenza in Walgreens locations nationwide, the Flu index helps customers and health officials stay informed about flu activity in their communities.

For the month of January, the top 10 states with flu activity included New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. In the top designated market areas with flu activity, southern states continued to rank in the top 5.

Merk has announced that spin-off products from its women’s health, legacy brands, and biosimilars will be transitioned to a new, independent, publicly traded corporation, Specialty Pharmacy Times reported.

Currently referred to as “NewCo” the new company is intended to spin-off $6.5 billion in assets. The move will allow Merk to focus on faster-growing cancer drugs, vaccines and animal health items.

The company plans to have a vast portfolio of highly profitable brands, ranging from dermatology, pain, respiratory, and select cardiovascular products.

The transaction is intended to be completed in the first half of 2021.

Pharmacists may get more questions about Humira, if patients have seen a recent commercial for the prescription medication.

In the spot, called “Baseball Game,” the narrator explains how Humira can get ulcerative colitis under control when other medications haven’t worked well enough.

According to the commercial, Humira is an injection intended to help adults control their mild to severe ulcerative colitis when administered as prescribed.

For more great coverage and practical information for today’s pharmacist, visit our website and sign up for our Daily eNews. And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Thanks for watching our Pharmacy Week in Review. I’m Nicole Grassano at the Pharmacy Times News Network.

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