Blogs: News & Views

Top Drugs and Business Trends

Mike Hennessy
Published Online: Monday, May 16, 2011
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No question about it, the pharmacist is the most educated health care professional when it comes to medications, drug– drug interactions, and what is new on the market. It is with this in mind that we present our annual “Top 200 Drugs of 2010” (see page 52)—a detailed look at the drugs that cross the pharmacy counter day in and day out. The trends that surfaced for the year and, no doubt, foreshadow the future will not totally surprise the pharmacist who expertly copes with the pharmaceutical industry’s drug data on a micro level.

Perhaps the most chilling comment by author Michael Bartholow, PharmD, is the following: “The current economic climate has stunted health care growth noticeably.” Numbers don’t lie, and it is clear that patients and would-be patients are either avoiding the costs of their brand name medications entirely or are being prescribed generics by their physicians instead. Never before has the job of the pharmacist been so important. As people choose not to see their doctors at all because they fear racking up large medical bills or they have lost their insurance coverage, the local pharmacist becomes even more of a friendly face than ever before.

Pharmacists can offer cost-saving over-the-counter solutions for certain conditions, but just as importantly, they can counsel the patient to go directly to their primary care doctor or specialist if they suspect that the problem will only get worse without treatment. Always at the front line, pharmacists know their community physicians well and can work with physicians to ensure that patients get the best care for the best price. That path may include a less expensive generic version of the branded medication—borne out by the numbers, as we see that spending in generics increased by $16.6 billion in 2010. In fact, generics represent 78% of the total number of prescriptions dispensed in the United States last year, according to IMS Health.

We at Pharmacy Times take the counseling role of the pharmacist very seriously—in fact, we are the only pharmacy journal that routinely features practical case studies, counseling tips, patient education guides, step-by-step clinical articles, and valuable continuing education for a wide range of common and complex health conditions. Drug information is also a keystone of Pharmacy Times as we continually bring our readers comprehensive product news and reviews of the most current new drugs in all 3 important categories—OTC, Rx, and Generic.

The hands-on approach of every pharmacist surely will help unravel the complexities and cost questions of any and all of these drug categories for the patient. And we’ll stand with pharmacists each day to help them do their jobs better— with current information they can use from the pages of Pharmacy Times, our relaunched Web site at www.PharmacyTimes.com, and exclusive iPad content.

Thank you for reading!

Mike Hennessy

About
Mike Hennessy, Chairman and CEO
Blog Info
Mike Hennessy shares his views and perspectives on issues that affect pharmacists.
Author Bio
ABOUT MIKE HENNESSY, President, Chairman, CEO

Mike Hennessy is President, Chairman, and CEO of MJH & Associates and Intellisphere, LLC, publisher of influential journals in health care, finance, and politics, including Pharmacy Times. Pharmacy Times is a clinically based, monthly journal providing practical information pharmacists can use in their everyday practice. Each issue contains articles and features covering medication errors, drug interactions, patient education, pharmacy technology, disease state management watches, patient counseling, product news, pharmacy law, and specialty pharmacy. Pharmacy Times is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) as a provider of free continuing pharmacy education.

As a businessman, entrepreneur, and publisher of magazines, iPad editions, projects, and Web sites that focus on the needs of health care professionals, Hennessy is intimately familiar with the challenges these professionals face every day in today's competitive practice environment. News & Views: Hennessy's Highlights dissects health care policy issues, the impact of pharmacy on national health care, and the critical issues that concern pharmacists as the new health care reform legislation is debated.

As publisher of Pharmacy Times, Mr. Hennessy launched the Next-Generation Pharmacist Awards in partnership with Parata Systems, to recognize the achievements of pharmacists in health care. "As the leader in pharmacy publishing, Pharmacy Times is shining a light on the critical role of the pharmacist in today's health care world and providing invaluable insight into the profession," Mike Hennessy, chairman, chief executive officer, and president said. "We are proud to recognize individual pharmacists in this 2nd annual awards program."

Pharmacy Times is published by Intellisphere, LLC, a leading provider of health care publishing, research, information, and education. Operating within both traditional and digital media channels, Intellisphere serves the needs of health care professionals through an extensive suite of magazines, journals, e-mail databases, Web sites, events and personal meetings. Intellisphere reaches more than half a million health care professionals through Pharmacy Times, Specialty Pharmacy Times, The American Journal of Managed Care, The American Journal of Pharmacy Benefits, MDNG, HCPlive.com, Oncology & Biotech News, Oncology Net Guide, Contemporary Oncology, and Oncology Net Guide: Nurses' Edition.
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