Gaining Perspective

Specialty Pharmacy Times, March/April 2014, Volume 5, Issue 2

The world of specialty pharmaceuticals is highly complex, and the stakeholders in that market know that they need to be kept fully informed about important legislative changes, significant new trends, and evolving best practices. It’s our passionate mission to fill those critical needs with this journal, Specialty Pharmacy Times, and our website, www .SpecialtyPharmacyTimes.com, plus our e-newsletters, which contain breaking news and clinical insights. In this issue, we provide a host of wide-ranging topics authored by industry leaders and experts who focus on the most important issues being discussed in specialty pharmacy circles today.

One of these experts is our esteemed editor-in-chief, Dan Steiber, RPh, who zeroes in on a crucial topic in his editorial in this issue. With his insights, our readers will gain perspective to help them in their daily practice and plans for the future. It’s all about a new law that creates a national pharmaceutical serialization and track and trace regulation, one that has been in the works for decades. In order to protect the supply chain from “illegitimate products,” and thus protect the consumer, the industry will now need to deal with new federal requirements to do business.

What will this mean for specialty pharmacy? Dan breaks that down in “Patient and Product Security: It’s the New Law” and offers what Specialty Pharmacy Times does best—a discussion of real-world specialty pharmacy practice with a focus on the business and practice of specialty management.

Our cover story focuses on another important topic—the needs of the payer in this evolving market. The article discusses the economics of health and therapy management programs, something everyone has their eyes on these days—even more so because of the impact of the Affordable Care Act. And specialty has a stronger than ever stake in the discussion because for the payers, according to Armada’s Mike Baldzicki, “Specialty pharmacies must demonstrate appropriate use through drug management programs.”

It is up the specialty pharmacies to add additional value to both the payer and the prescriber “by providing additional patient education, opportunities for improved adherence, and other cost utilization measures.” Please read this fascinating discussion starting on page 12 to see what is trending—and what specialty pharmacists are already accomplishing in this new health care landscape.

Again, in keeping with our mission to report on critical topics for the field, we also offer an overview of what’s happening with biosimilars. According to Moody’s Investors Service, many companies are expanding the global market of biosimilars, although the United States is still a number of years away from marketing these products. Even so, the smart thinking is to stay on top of what is actually happening in this country, so “Biosimilars: Where Are They Now?” by Steven Lucio, PharmD, BCPS, of Novation offers some keen insights. SPT

Thank you for reading!

Mike Hennessy

Chairman/Chief Executive Officer