Maine Pharmacy Association

DHHS shared guidance documents for e-prescribing and opioid dispensing

DHHS shared guidance documents for e-prescribing and opioid dispensing.  Notably, “A pharmacist is NOT required to verify that a practitioner has a waiver of the requirement to electronically prescribe…” To review the official documents, please click on the links below. Electronic-Prescribing-Clarifications Opioid Dispensing Clarification    

E-Prescribing Grace Period Notice and Chapter 488 User Guide

The deadline for mandatory e-prescribing of opioids was rapidly approaching on July 1st. However, the State sent the following communication announcing a 31 day grace period for enforcement of the penalties for violating the e-prescribing provision.  This is good news and will give prescribers and dispensers a little more time to prepare. DHHS provided material on other provisions in Chapter […]

2017 Scholarship Golf Scramble

Join us for our 2017 Scholarship Golf Scramble ! Where: Val Halla Country Club When: Saturday, August 12, 2017 Shotgun start 1pm Includes 18 holes of golf on a championship course, golf cart, BBQ dinner at Rachel’s on the Green! Cost: Single Golfer: $110.00 Foursome: $400.00 Dinner Only: $35.00 Corporate or personal hole sponsorship: $75 […]

Pharmacists from across Maine convene in Augusta to advocate for profession and patients

Pharmacists and pharmacy students from across the state convened in Augusta on May 30th to advocate for LD 572.   Update: Senate passes LD 572; now on to the House!  LD 572 specifies in statute that the “Practice of Pharmacy” is “the provision of health care services” and that “Pharmacists” are “providers of health care services”. […]

LD6 and LD44 Are Successfully Moving Through the Legislative Process

Good news!!  Two bills, LD 6, an “An Act to Prohibit Insurance Carriers from Retroactively Reducing Payment on Clean Claims Submitted by Pharmacies” and LD 455, “An Act Relating to the Provision of Smoking Cessation Services by Pharmacists” are moving through the legislature process. LD 6, an “An Act to Prohibit Insurance Carriers from Retroactively Reducing Payment on […]

Archive for November, 2013

Maine Pharmacy Association honors  deserving individuals at the Annual Fall Convention.  Nominations are open from April 1st- June 1st.

Douglas H. Kay Distinguished Pharmacy Educator Award

Sponsored by:  Maine Pharmacy Association

The Douglas H. Kay Distinguished Pharmacy Educator Award is named after Maine’s “most distinguished” and nationally recognized pharmacy educator. The Award recognizes those who have made a significant contribution to pharmacy education in Maine and who have had a positive influence in the lives of future generations of pharmacists in the state. Nominees must have shown a commitment to the overall mission and objectives of pharmacy education with at least 15-years’ experience in any type of pharmacy education, including teaching, precepting and mentoring of trainees.

Distinguished Young Pharmacist Award

Sponsored by:  Pharmacists Mutual Companies

The Distinguished Young Pharmacist Award was designed to acknowledge young pharmacists in each state for individual excellence and outstanding contribution to their pharmacy association and community. The criteria for this award is as follows: Entry degree in pharmacy received less than 10 years ago, licensed to practice in state in which selected, current membership in the state pharmacy association, participation in national pharmacy associations, professional programs, state association activities and/or community service.

Bowl of Hygeia Award

Sponsored by:  American Pharmacists Association Foundation and the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations

The Bowl of Hygeia Award recognizes pharmacists who possess outstanding records of civic leadership in their communities and encourages pharmacists to take active roles in the affairs of their respective communities. The award is presented annually by participating state pharmacist associations, including those in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. In addition to service through their local, state and national pharmacy associations, award recipients have devoted their time, talent and resources to a wide variety of causes and community service.

Cardinal Health Generation Rx Champions Award

Sponsored by:  Cardinal Health Foundation

The Cardinal Health Generation Rx Champions Award program recognizes excellence in community-based prescription drug abuse prevention at state pharmacy associations.  This award honors a pharmacist who has demonstrated outstanding commitment to raising awareness of the dangers of prescription drug abuse among the general public and among the pharmacy community.  The award is also intended to encourage educational prevention efforts aimed at patients, youth, and other members of the community.

Upsher-Smith Excellence in Innovation Award

Sponsored by:  Upsher-Smith

The NASPA Excellence in Innovation Award recognizes and honors a qualified pharmacist who has demonstrated significant innovation in his or her respective practice, method, or service directly or indirectly resulting in improved patient care and/or advancement of the profession of pharmacy. The award is presented annually by participating state pharmacist associations, including those in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

Maine Technician of the Year Award

Sponsored by: Maine Pharmacy Association

The Maine Pharmacy Association Technician of the Year Award acknowledges an individual of high integrity who displays excellence in the role of pharmacy technician, is motivated to learn new tasks and roles, and is a contributing member of their pharmacy team.

The Maine Board of Pharmacy submits Statement of Concern to Governor LePage regarding the enactment of Public Law 2013, chapter 373, An Act to Facilitate the Personal Importation of Prescription Drugs from International Mail Order Prescription Pharmacies.

The letter dated November 12, 2013, stated, “The Board’s primary purpose is to protect the public health and welfare through the regulation of the practice of pharmacy…” and “From our public protection perspective this exemption from regulatory oversight and compliance requirements [under the new importation law] causes great concern in an area of significant risk”

The letter in its entirety is available here.

A 2013 Maine Board of Pharmacy memorandum acknowledges that performing CLIA waived tests (e.g., blood glucose and blood cholesterol) are within a pharmacists scope of practice. Performing CLIA waived tests including finger-stick prothrombin-time/INR measurements are an important component of a pharmacists scope of practice in order to monitor drug therapy and optimize patient outcomes.

Pharmacy students from Husson University School of Pharmacy and University of New England College of Pharmacy are making a difference in communities throughout Maine.  Pictured above, pharmacy students are teaching children about health and nutrition at an elementary school in Bangor, educating the community about topics ranging from diabetes and heart health to prescription drug abuse, performing blood pressure checks at a Hannaford Pharmacy in Portland, and providing immunizations for veterans at the Togus VA Medical Center in Augusta.  The attitudes, values and good works of our students create a culture of caring and community service that cultivates professionalism.

INTERNATIONAL (WGME) – CBS 13 News is investigating the safety of prescription medicine you can buy online with just a few clicks. The Food and Drug Administration is shutting down thousands of sites it says are illegally selling potentially dangerous drugs, but we were able to easily get medication in the mail without a prescription.

Dr. Greg Adey is a urologist in Portland. He says erectile dysfunction is a top complaint with his patients, which he often treats with prescription drugs, like Viagra. As the drug has become more and more popular during the last 15 years, dozens of websites have popped up selling the diamond-shaped pill without a visit to a doctor and without a prescription.

We opened up that box with a quick Google search for “order Viagra online.” We found several websites offering “easy purchase” and “no doctor visit.” It only took a few clicks and $50 to order what claimed to be 10 generic Viagra.

We took what we got in the mail just a few days later, shipped from India, to pharmacist Joe Bruno.

“It’s illegal. There’s no label on that which it’s supposed to have. No name or doctor. Did you have to go through any questions? They just sent it. All illegal,” Bruno said.

Not only illegal, Bruno says, likely not effective either.

“There is no generic for Viagra. Viagra doesn’t look anything like this,” he said.

So if the purple pills we got in the mail aren’t generic Viagra as the online pharmacy says, what are they? We took the pills to the University of New England College of Pharmacy to find out.

“We’re going to analyze the sample you’ve provided in order to determine what the product is by molecular weight,” Dr. McCall said.

The tests found the tablets do contain the active ingredient in Viagra: Sildenafil but not 50 milligrams as the label says and what you’d find in Pfizer’s Viagra. In fact, the lab analysis shows the pill doesn’t even have 7 milligrams of the ingredient.

“We found less than 1/7 of what was labeled was present,” Dr. McCall said.

The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy recently reviewed more than 10,000 internet drug outlets selling prescription medications. It found almost 97% of them aren’t in compliance with the law and / or safety standards. The report cites the outlets for non-compliance for some of the following reasons: “Do not post any address,” “Do not require valid Rx,” “Issue Rx per online consult,” and “Sell foreign drugs.”

“That’s a major problem with mail order pharmacies,” Bruno said.

Depending on the drug, medical professionals say, it can also be dangerous or deadly.

“If it were a heart medicine, diabetes medicine, I would be extremely concerned this could result in an emergency room visit or hospitalization because the patient got an inadequate dose,” Dr. McCall explained.

We’ll be taking the pills back to the lab so they can be properly disposed. We’ve also reported the website, the experience, and the lab results to the FDA, which a spokesperson says triggered a compliance investigation. The FDA wanted us to mention that at no time did any of us or anyone at the lab actually ingest those tablets.

After several calls and e-mails to the online pharmacy, an operator who said she was in the UK asked us to email the lab results and then hung up. The website for the drug manufacturer printed on the label, doesn’t work. An email response sent to CBS 13 appears to be a standard, form reply.”

Watch the entire news video here.