Wednesday, March 21, 2018
March 2016
2016 Annual Meeting & Exhibition - March 17 – 18, 2016
It’s the meeting of the year and a time-honored tradition. NJSHP’s exciting event never disappoints! The Annual Meeting Committee and the Board of Directors have put in numerous hours working on a meeting that will be topical, informative, inspiring and provide the membership with networking opportunities. Even the days of the meeting have changed, as it will be held on a Thursday and Friday. So why should you come out for this year's meeting? The reasons are many!
  • The two day format offers a great opportunity for organizations to get more staff to the Annual Meeting; something that many staff pharmacists and technicians would really enjoy
  • CE credits are offered on both days, so you can join us for the two days or for either Thursday or Friday
  • There will be information on the activities your Society is engaged in and how they impact our membership
  • Well planned and relevant educational offerings with expert speakers
  • The ever popular "College Bowl"
  • A Pharmacy Technician specific presentation
  • The chance to network and discuss issues that impact your practice with fellow professionals
  • Opportunities for residents, students and vendors to interact with a diverse NJSHP membership and pharmacy leaders
  • A great meeting location with plenty of space that provides a comfortable atmosphere in which to learn and network
If you have attended Annual Meetings in the past, all I can say is that you know how the meeting has continued to grow and get better every year. However, if you have never attended an Annual Meeting, then you need to come and see how the meeting has really caught on as a vehicle for education, communication and professional interaction.

Check out the latest information at and don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. Please be part of the excitement at the 2016 Annual Meeting. And while you are there, please don't hesitate to introduce yourself to a member of the Board.

We are looking forward to seeing you in Long Branch.
President’s Message

Pharmacy’s Future Promise

In talking about the future, I’d like to focus my remarks on two areas. The first is our upcoming Annual Meeting, and the second deals with the exciting possibilities that rest with the leadership potential of our student members.

We are quickly closing in on our 2016 Annual Meeting which will take place on March 17th and 18th at the Ocean Place Resort and Spa in Long Branch. I can’t say enough about how the members of the Annual Meeting Committee have worked to put together a program that you will find informative and helpful in meeting the demands of your practice setting. When I think back I can remember the group’s first few meetings and the discussions that took place about how to provide our members with both relevant educational sessions and opportunities for networking with colleagues and friends. It was evident to me that the committee felt a real responsibility to bring you something special. As the months went by, and the planning got much more detailed, I watched a meeting take shape that you will definitely want to be part of. When I think back on the past meetings I have attended, I can’t help but feel that I learned so much that impacted my future practice. In fact, the Annual Meeting had some of the greatest influence on my decision to get more involved with NJSHP. This is our opportunity to support our profession, so please plan to be there.

In February I had the opportunity to meet with our student chapter at the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, and later this month I will have a similar opportunity to meet with the student chapter at the Fairleigh Dickinson University School of Pharmacy. What really stood out to me in my first meeting was the respect with which I was treated and the interest the students displayed in what I had to talk about. We spoke at length about improving the relationship between NJSHP and the student chapters, and about the importance of student involvement in the Society. As I stood there looking at their faces, I not only thought about how smart they were, but also that some of them will be the future leaders that will continue the necessary work of promoting the advancement of pharmacy practice.

Sometimes we need a little motivation to do our best work. My experiences with the Annual Meeting and the Student Chapters have provided me with the “spinach” I need to keep focus on what needs to be done. If you are old enough to remember the old Popeye cartoons, you may recall what Popeye would say right before he ate his spinach to build up his strength… “I’ve had all I can stands and I can’t stands no more!” As pharmacists, we too need to think about when it’s time to get that boost we need to help propel us all forward.

Thank you for your support, and for being members of NJSHP!

Steven Aragona
President, NJSHP

PTCB Sets New Recertification Deadlines for Active Certified Pharmacy Technicians
Effective in January 2016, PTCB implemented a new recertification schedule for all active Certified Pharmacy Technicians. PTCB added nine additional recertification deadlines for a total of 12 per year. In addition, the recertification window has been reduced from 100 days to 60 days. PTCB also implemented an application deadline date replacing the renewal by date and added a late application fee of $25. All CPhTs are affected by the changes. Most active Certified Pharmacy Technicians have a new certification expiration date. A small percentage of CPhTs are keeping their original PTCB expiration date. PTCB’s new recertification deadline schedule is designed to help facilitate application submission and processing, and reduce potential disruptions that could affect an individual’s employment or state registration. All are required to apply for recertification by the first day of their expiration month or they will be charged the late application processing fee of $25. CPhTs can quickly check their certification expiration date by logging into their PTCB account at
Tri-State Health-System Pharmacy Summit 2016 - Friday, September 30th
Please mark your calendar to attend our 4th annual Tri-State Summit (NJ, NY, CT), which will be convened on September 30th at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Tarrytown, 455 South Broadway, Tarrytown, NY 10591. More details will follow.
Upcoming Events
(Check website for additional information as it becomes available)
North Chapter Meeting – April 21, 2016
Help! My blood pressure's failing and it won’t come up! Managing Beta-blocker and Calcium Channel Blocker Toxicity.
Speaker: Steven Nerenberg, Pharm.D., BCPS
Hackensack University Medical Center
Hackensack, NJ 07601

North Central Chapter Meeting – April 13, 2016
Drug Quality and Security Act/Track and Trace Requirements
Overlook Medical Center
Summit, NJ

Central Chapter Meeting – April 20, 2016
Identifying and Addressing Addiction vs. Dependence in Medical Practices Location: TBA

PRACTICE-BASED PROGRAM – Improving Transitions of Care – April 23, 2016
Home Study & Live CE
Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy
Piscataway, NJ

North Central Chapter Meeting – May 11, 2016
USP 800
Overlook Medical Center
Summit, NJ

North Chapter Meeting – May 14, 2015
Medication Safety Symposium
St. Joseph’s Wayne Hospital
Wayne, NJ 07470

Central Chapter Meeting – May (TBA), 2016
Topic: TBA (Toxicology Topic)
Location: TBA

North Central Chapter Meeting – June 15, 2016
Hepatitis C Virus Infection
Overlook Medical Center
Summit, NJ

Central Chapter Meeting – June (TBA), 2016
Topic: TBA (Track & Trace)
Location: TBA

2016 Tri-State Summit – September 30, 2016
DoubleTree by Hilton Tarrytown
455 South Broadway
Tarrytown, NY
Pharmacy Students Push for Provider Status on Capitol Hill

Nearly 50 students visited 31 congressional offices on Capitol Hill earlier this month as part of ASHP’s Student Advocate Training & Legislative Day. The two-day conference, also known as SSHPTakesDC, gives student pharmacists hands-on experience in how to directly affect public policy.

During meetings at the U.S. Capitol with members of Congress and legislative staff, the students made the case for provider status legislation, the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act (H.R.592 and S.314), by emphasizing how the pharmacy school curriculum and postgraduate residency training prepare future practitioners to be patient care providers.

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FDA Addresses ASHP Concerns in Pre-Published Guidance

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today announced the availability of a guidance for industry entitled “Requirements for Transactions with First Responders under Section 582 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act — Compliance Policy.”

The guidance specifically addresses concerns raised by ASHP and its members over the ability of hospitals to supply first responders with medications in anticipation of emergent use or specific patient need.

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Companies Use Value-Based Pricing for Single-Source Off-Patent Drugs
[March 15, 2016, AJHP News]

Cheryl A. Thompson

BETHESDA, MD 25 Feb 2016 - The behind-the-scenes decisions on prices for single-source off-patent drugs came center stage on February 4 when two company executives explained business strategies to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc.'s Howard B. Schiller and Turing Pharmaceuticals' Nancy Retzlaff faced a panel of congressional representatives who took turns questioning the executives on their companies' conduct.

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ASHP Expresses Major Concerns with Proposed Revisions to Chapter <797> Standards, Offers Recommendations

A number of proposed changes to the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) General Chapter <797> Pharmaceutical Compounding - Sterile Preparations standards are incompatible with the medication-use process in patient care environments, ASHP stated in comments submitted to a USP expert panel earlier this month.

In its comment letter, ASHP points out that many of the new requirements are more appropriate for making drugs from bulk chemicals in compounding pharmacies or outsourcing facilities than for preparing medications for administration in patient care settings. The letter urges the expert panel to revise the proposals to better meet the urgent and unpredictable demands of the typical acute patient care setting.

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Baxter Recalls 0.9% Sodium Chloride Irrigation Lot G120162
Cheryl A. Thompson

BETHESDA, MD 19 Feb 2016 - Baxter International Inc. on Wednesday announced the recall of lot G120162 of the company's 500-mL 0.9% Sodium Chloride Irrigation product because an insect was found in one bottle of solution from the lot.

The product's labeling states that the solution is "for irrigation only." The company said the solution may be used to flush or rinse medical equipment, such as catheters.

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Pharmacy News
Health-System Pharmacists Empower the Team
Drug Topics (02/10/16) Vecchione, Anthony
Health-system pharmacists are increasingly involved in patient care and interact regularly with physicians, nurses, and other caregivers. They evaluate trends in medication use and physician prescribing, develop guidelines for medication use, and implement and maintain drug distribution systems. In some hospitals, they provide specialized services in areas such as pediatrics, oncology, infectious diseases, nutrition support, and drug information. As patient safety experts, they are responsible for the automation systems that control drug distribution. In collaboration with nursing, they help to ensure that patients receive the right medication, in the correct form and dosage, at the right time, in order to prevent adverse events. "Hospital pharmacists have long embraced the roles that practice standards, residency training, credentialing and privileging, and specialty certification play in achieving optimal patient care outcomes," says Kasey K. Thompson, PharmD, MS, MBA, vice president, ASHP Office of Policy, Planning, and Communications. Thompson notes that pharmacy technician education, training, and certification, along with the enhanced use of information technology, have also played important roles. "These advancements and others in hospitals have served as examples for other practice settings, many of which are now seeking to adopt similar pharmacy practice models," Thompson says. As the role of the health-system pharmacist continues to expand beyond clinical duties, the pharmacy executive, a relatively new position, is also gaining ground. According to ASHSP, it behooves hospitals and health systems to have a pharmacy executive responsible for the strategic planning, design, operation, and improvement of the organization’s medication management system.
Hospitals' Medicine Mistakes Spike, but More Mysteries Revealed
Minneapolis Star Tribune (02/19/16) Olson, Jeremy
The Minnesota Department of Health has identified 4 deaths and 10 serious injuries caused by medication mix-ups at hospitals statewide during the 12 months ended October 6. The tally reflects the highest total in more than a decade of "adverse event" reporting there, despite greater use of computerized order entry and robotic drug dispensers. "There are many transition points" in prescribing," acknowledges Rahul Koranne, MD, chief medical officer for the Minnesota Hospital Association. "The medicine is ordered by the physician, so there is room for human error there. The medication is then checked off by the nurse ... and evaluated by the pharmacist." However, collecting error data has helped to expose specific weak spots—showing blood thinners and cardiac drugs to be particularly problematic, along with medication checks and changes following patient discharge. While the report found that monitoring and recordkeeping systems can backfire by alerting patients too often for non-urgent matters, some hospitals have had success with programs that post pharmacists in the emergency room, where they interview patients and review prescription histories. The visits often lead to adjustments in patients' drug regimens.
UA College of Pharmacy Developing Dry Powder Inhalers to Treat Pulmonary Diseases
News-Medical.Net (02/24/16)
Research recently published in Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery details the development of dry powder inhalation aerosols to treat and prevent pulmonary diseases. The report, by University of Arizona College of Pharmacy assistant professor Heidi M. Mansour, discusses currently available dry powder inhalers for inhalable powder drug formulations used in the treatment of COPD, asthma, and pulmonary infections. Mansour says delivering drugs to the lungs is the best method of treatment, but there are a variety of complications involved. "The lung is the organ of life that we're targeting, so there are added regulations and added safety limits that we have to work within," she says.
Drug Shortages Forcing Hard Decisions on Rationing Treatments
New York Times (01/29/16) Fink, Sheri
In recent years, shortages of a wide variety of drugs have become increasingly common in American medicine. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists currently lists inadequate supplies of more than 150 drugs and therapeutics, for such reasons as manufacturing problems and federal safety crackdowns. The rationing that results from such shortages has been largely hidden from patients and the public. Medical institutions across the country have faced choices about who gets drugs. Some institutions have formal committees that include ethicists and patient representatives; in other places, individual physicians, pharmacists, and drug company executives decide which patients receive a needed drug—and which do not. Marc Earl, a Cleveland Clinic pharmacist, says children are not favored over adults during chemotherapy shortages. But at other hospitals, they have been, because of their potentially longer life span or because they sometimes require smaller doses of a drug. At Cleveland Clinic, decisions about conserving, substituting, and allocating scarce drugs typically are made by small groups of doctors and pharmacists.
Embracing Pharmacy Care Management for High-Value Care Delivery
Drug Store News (02/12/16) Biczak, Laureen
Pharmacists have played a greater role in clinical care in recent years, thanks to two key trends. Medication adherence and the rising cost of generic and brand-name drugs have thrust pharmacists into the clinical spotlight and created a need for a multi-pronged approach to care. Non-adherence costs the United States about $290 billion each year, with only 50 to 70 of every 100 prescriptions being filled by patients, according to industry statistics. Only 25 to 30 of those are properly taken. These numbers can put a strain on value-based goals, so pharmacy care management has become a tool to address the issue. This management allows patients to receive consultation immediately after receiving a medication, which permits the pharmacist to evaluate the drug's potential effect on a patient and educate the patient on how to properly take the drug. "Pharmacies that capitalize on the unique knowledge base and expertise that [pharmacists] bring to care delivery can have greater success in moving the needle on outcomes and performance in the value-based health care landscape," writes Laureen Biczak, medical director of Goold Health Systems, a Change Healthcare company.
New 'Smart Pill Bottle' Knows When You've Taken Your Medication (02/08/16) Fleischer, Tim
A "smart pill bottle" from AdhereTech alerts patients to when they have not taken their daily medications. "Patients just aren't taking their meds," said AdhereTech CEO Josh Stein. "It's one of the biggest problems in health care." The smart bottle signals a blue light and sounds an alarm when a person has missed his or her medication, sends the information to the individual's health care provider, and even directs a message to the patient's phone. Stein and his partners are working with hospitals to offer the bottles to patients taking expensive medication, where each dose is especially valuable. AdhereTech is also working with pharmacies to provide the technology for free and for use in clinical trials.
New Study Highlights Risks of Combining Benzodiazepines and Opioids
Pain Medicine News (02/10/2016) Holzman, David C.
The risk of overdose from taking opioid analgesics at the same time as benzodiazepines is four times the risk from taking opioids by themselves, according to new research. The study used VA documentation and the National Death Index to identify 422,786 veterans prescribed opioids for nonterminal cancer pain, about a quarter of whom also were on benzodiazepines. Approximately 2,400 people in the study sample suffered a fatal overdose, and about one-half of them were patients taking both drugs. "If you are going to prescribe benzodiazepines [to people on analgesic opioids], you should understand that there may be an increased risk of overdose, and you should consider what disorder you are attempting to treat," said coinvestigator Tae Woo Park, MD, of Brown University. "Typically, benzodiazepines are prescribed for anxiety disorders and insomnia, and these are pretty common in patients with pain problems. You want to ensure that you are prescribing in an evidence-based manner, and carefully weigh the risks and benefits of treatment." Park also identified high opioid doses, a history of mental health and/or substance abuse problems, and having more than one doctor prescribing opioids or more than one pharmacy filling them as other warning signs of high risk for overdose.
'Adherent' Patients May Not be Better Than 'Non-Adherent' Peers at Taking Their Medication (02/16/2016)
According to researchers the Universidad Miguel Hernández (UMH) in Spain, patients who are considered "adherent"—those who pick up their prescriptions each month—are not statistically any better than "non-adherent" patients at actually taking their medicine. The study also found that if changes are made to the size, shape, or color of the capsule, patients are more likely to stop taking their medication. UMH researchers and pharmacy lecturers Elsa López Pintor and Blanca Lumbreras Lacarra studied about 600 patients in Alicante who were being treated for hypertension. They discovered that lack of adherence even among patients who regularly collected their medication was as high as 32%. Those taking five or more different medications and long-term outpatients were better at following their prescribed treatments. Adherence was strongest when the medication did not interfere with the patient's daily activities.
Program Helps Patients Improve Medication Adherence
Rapid City Journal (SD) (02/06/16) Gahagan, Kayla
Approximately 50% of patients do not take their medications as prescribed, according to Prescriptions for a Healthy America, and at least 125,00 Americans die each year as a result of poor medication adherence. A new program from the Medicine Shoppe aims to help, enabling patients with multiple medications to sync all of their medications to be picked up at the same time and sending a reminder the day before they are ready. Curt Rising, owner and pharmacist at the Medicine Shoppe, said that "on their own, patients typically fill meds 6 to 8 times a year," but with this program, patients are "filling 11 to 12 times a year." Rising said the patients' relatives are often relieved when the patient receives a med box to help organize medications, or they use a program such as med sync. Other ways to help increase adherence include setting alarms, using cellphone apps designed for prescriptions, and writing reminders on a calendar. Dana Darger, director of pharmacy at Rapid City Regional Hospital, said the best thing a patient can do is sit down with their pharmacist and work out a schedule for medications.
Wisconsin Pharmacies Will Pilot Making Prescription Bottles Easier to Read
Wisconsin Public Radio News (02/15/16) Mills, Shamane
In Wisconsin, 46 pharmacy locations are participating in a campaign to boost prescription adherence by making medicine bottles easier to read and understand. Based on recommendations from the nonprofit U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention, the 2-year pilot program will include more white space and enlarged print on labels; use numerals instead of spelling numbers out; avoid type in all capital letters, which is more difficult to read; and be more specific about what the medication treats and when to take it. "One of the challenges that we have with current labels is that sometimes the most important things are not the things that are emphasized most," acknowledges Steve Sparks of Wisconsin Literacy, noting that pharmacy logos or prescribing doctors' names often claim the most space. He says pharmacies report that patients, especially those with multiple prescriptions, often ask for additional information to be written on their medicine label. The new standards, he says, will benefit all patients but older adults in particular as well as those with poor reading skills.
RxSafe, Datarithm Team to Streamline Pharmacy Inventory Management
Drug Store News (02/11/16) Salazar, David
In an effort to streamline inventory for pharmacy owners, pharmacy automation company RxSafe and inventory software company Datarithm are entering into a partnership. RxSafe's real-time inventory combined with Datarithm's software, which delivers optimized order points, can quickly identify surpluses and offer pharmacies solutions for handling them. "The result is a game-changing model that eliminates cycle-counting, frees up cash, and allows pharmacies to focus on patient care and services," said William Holmes, RxSafe president and CEO. Datarithm has also declared its eagerness to work with RxSafe: "Their RxSafe 1800 System, and all that it does, combined with Datarithm's customizable Rx inventory software, and all it does, makes for a very flexible, powerful, and automated solution," said Datarithm VP sales and marketing Dan Sullivan.
March 2016
Daiichi Sankyo
Fairleigh Dickinson University School of Pharmacy
Grifols USA
H. D. Smith
Pharmatek Systems
Teva Oncology
The Medicines Company
VigiLanz Corporation

To be visibly engaged in the enhancement of healthcare through professional development of our members in the practice of pharmacy.

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New Jersey Society of Health-System Pharmacists
760 Alexander Rd
P.O. Box 1
Princeton, NJ 08543-0001
(609) 936-2205

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About ASHP
ASHP is a 35,000-member national professional association that represents pharmacists who practice in hospitals, health maintenance organizations, long-term care facilities, home care, and other components of health care systems. ASHP is the only national organization of hospital and health-system pharmacists and has a long history of improving medication use and enhancing patient safety.

American Society of Health-System Pharmacists
7272 Wisconsin Avenue
Bethesda, MD 20814

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