Armada Specialty Pharmacy Summit Commemorates Impactful General Session, Features Keynote from Michael J. Fox


Thousands of stakeholders assemble to discuss issues and growth in specialty pharmacy.

A panel of speakers from all facets of health care convened yesterday to discuss the growth of the specialty pharmaceuticals industry during the 10th Annual Specialty Pharmacy Summit & Expo, hosted by Armada Health Care, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The four-day conference brought together more than 3,000 stakeholders from the specialty pharmacy industry.

Speakers who participated in the general session discussion included Lawrence S. Irene, chief executive officer, Armada Health Care; Randy Falkenrath, senior vice president, specialty pharmacy services, CVS Caremark; Jim Robinson, president, Astellas Pharma US; Myrtle Potter, founder and chief executive officer, Myrtle Potter & Company LLC and Myrtle Potter Media Inc.; and Michael J. Fox, award-winning actor, author, comedian, producer, and patient advocate.

The presentations focused on the notion that the pharmaceutical industry is shifting to meet the high medical need of specialty patients and that patients are facing new challenges as a result of the impact of the Affordable Care Act, particularly as it relates to specialty drug coverage.

The evolving regulatory landscape, the shift to high deductible plans, and increasing health care consolidation in the industry will likely change the patient and caregiver experience, noted the speakers. Cost inflation on drugs will continue to be a problem, and longer patient lifespans will further exacerbate the cost management challenge. However, through management of the "whole patient" and identification of new ways to focus on cost, quality, and access, providers can continue to deliver the care coordination necessary to produce favorable patient outcomes, the speakers determined.

The morning concluded with an inspiring presentation by Michael J. Fox, who told the audience of his personal struggles following his Parkinson's disease diagnosis in 1991. While he had considered himself an eternal optimist, Fox admitted that during a particularly low point in his life, he lamented to his wife that he "would never finish [his] book on optimism." He spoke of the enduring support from his family, and of the steps he took to overcome the obstacles related to his disease. "People always think I am an expert on time," he quipped.

The Armada Specialty Pharmacy Summit & Expo will conclude today with a full program of sessions relating to payer management trends, 340B, biosimilars, limited distribution, health insurance exchanges, patient adherence, contracting strategies, and HI-TECH/HIPAA legislation.


About Armada Health Care, LLC

Armada Health Care, LLC (Armada) is the industry's largest specialty pharmacy group purchasing and contracting organization and is a leading provider for channel management solutions, commercialization strategies, and support services for the specialty pharmacy industry. Armada provides comprehensive and cost-effective access to the nation's $100 billion specialty pharmacy industry. Armada offers pharmacy providers, manufacturers, health plans and wholesale distributors a total channel management solution through customized patient programs, prescription data management services, online platforms, and unique purchasing agreements on specialty pharmacy products. Armada is also the founder and host of the nation's largest annual specialty pharmacy summit and expo.

SOURCE: Armada Health Care

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