PACE Pharmacy News & Updates
Are new Hepatitis C Drugs Safe?
An estimated 2.2 to 3.3 million persons are chronically infected with Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) in the US. Some recently approved treatments, direct-acting antivirals, have been show n to be better tolerated and to cure patients affected by HCV with a shorter duration than previous options. But, a new report suggests that these newer HCV treatments may have severe side effects, including liver failure. Dr. Lisa A. Banks speaks to the limitations of this report, and recommends an evidence-based, patient-specific approach for treating patients with HCV.

Read the full CareKinesis report response
2016 PACE Medication Trends

In 2016, across all CareKinesis clients, the most frequently prescribed PACE medications by therapeutic class were: 
  1. cardiovascular
  2. pain (non-narcotic analgesics)
  3. mental health
  4. antihypertensives
  5. vitamins
These trends are loosely aligned with the recent IMS report (as discussed in Drug Topics), with the exception that CareKinesis figures account for all medications. That is, while pain medications ranked third nationally, that figure included only dispensed prescriptions, not over-the-counter medications.
Opioids and PACE

A recent OIG report expresses concerns about the high proportion of Part D beneficiaries receiving prescription opioids. This is one of many reasons that both state and federal governments are making changes to prescribing regulations. CareKinesis will be hosting two webinars in May to discuss opioids and PACE:
  • Opioids: Regulatory Perspectives for PACE
    • Wednesday, May 10 @ 3pm ET
    • Presenter: Richard B. Greene, PharmD, MBA, Sr. Director of Regulatory Affairs
  • Opioids: Clinical Perspectives for PACE
    • Wednesday, May 24 @ 3pm ET
    • Presenters: Lauren A. Steffen, PharmD, Clinical Pharmacy Liaison and David A. Wilner, MD, Sr. Medical Consultant (Capstone Performance Systems)
CareKinesis continues to monitor opioid prescribing trends for PACE participants and to suggest alternatives, when appropriate.  If you are a client who would like more information on your opioid prescribing, contact your Client Liaison or email us today .
When Old Medicine Goes Bad (NPR)

On February 6, NPR's Morning Edition aired an informative piece about expiration dates. Please consider sharing this information with participants. 

What does an "expiration" date on medicine really mean? Is the drug now dangerous? Less effective? That date stamped on the label actually means a lot. It's based on scientific evidence gathered by the manufacturer showing how long the drug's potency lasts. Exact potency may not be a big deal for treating a headache, but for fighting a bacterial infection with antibiotics, using less than fully potent drugs could fail to treat the infection and contribute to antibiotic resistance.

NPA Policy Conference and
CK & Capstone Reception

This year, the NPA Spring Policy Forum will be held March 20-22 in Washington, DC. On Monday, March 20, CareKinesis and Capstone Performance Systems will be co-hosting a PACE Appreciation Reception at the conference hotel. Please join us! Click here to register.

And, be sure to visit the exhibit hall. We'll be at booths 1 & 2!
Upcoming Events

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