The NCPA annual survey served up some interesting, but by no means surprising, nuggets. Complaints about DIR fees ranked top on the list of issues that registered concern among pharmacists. Douglas Hoey, NCPA CEO cited other top priorities like “long-standing, PBM-generated challenges” of transparency and preferred pharmacy designations and their impact on independent pharmacists. The Eighth Circuit hasn’t provided much hope, either. It recently handed an appellate decision in Pharmaceutical Care Management Association v. Gerhart to PCMA, effectively describing the much-sought-after transparency pharmacy advocates are pushing as “interference” under ERISA (The Employee Retirement Income Security Act). It was not a good day for independent pharmacy.
Coordinated care continues to be top of mind among providers. Two studies presented at the 2016 American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting in Washington, DC last week submitted data that supports the interrelationship between inflammation in rheumatic conditions and that of cardiovascular inflammation. In one study, they found that a relatively high percentage of patients were not seen regularly by both specialties, with one presenter, Iris Navarro-Milan of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, lamenting: “We could coordinate care between specialties, but sometimes the issue is: who takes ownership of the problem?”
Here are few other stories that might be of interest: