News you can use: health & drug safety updates

2004

  • October 22, 2004
    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Public Health Advisory announcing a multi-pronged strategy to warn the public about the increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior ("suicidality") in children and adolescents being treated with antidepressant medications. Manufacturers are directed to add a “black box” warning to the health professional labeling of all antidepressant medications. The second element of the agency’s strategy is a Patient Medication Guide (MedGuide), FDA-approved user-friendly information for patients, which are
  • October 19, 2004
    A recent survey by NCPIE member, the National Consumers League (NCL), shows that many consumers don't know how to tell if a drug is real or counterfeit. Consumers also need advice to help them purchase drugs safely online. Among the key findings: four percent of respondents said they had purchased a drug they suspected was counterfeit; nearly a third of those who thought they may have purchased counterfeit drugs failed to report their suspicions to anyone; 76% of those reporting that they have purchased drugs online favor the idea of state
  • October 1, 2004
    NCPIE’s annual “Talk About Prescriptions” Month kicks off today with the Theme, “Your Medicine Information: Read It and Heed It.” The written leaflets that accompany prescription medicines serve as a perfect starting point for consumers, patients and caregivers to ask questions of their health care professionals. This “TAP” theme also highlights NCPIE’s “Consumer Medicine Information” Initiative, working to ensure that federal goals for CMI usefulness are met by 2006.
  • October 1, 2004
    NCPIE’s October 2004 National Health Observance
  • August 26, 2004
    The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) recently launched, “NIDA for Teens:The Science Behind Drug Abuse,” a new web site targeting adolescents (ages 11 through 15) as well as their parents and teachers. Designed by NIDA with input from teens, the site delivers science-based facts about how drugs affect the brain and body. Animated illustrations, quizzes, and games are used to clarify concepts, test knowledge, and make learning fun. Drugs currently featured on the site are marijuana, nicotine, ecstasy, and anabolic steroids, with sections on inhalants and stimulants coming soon.
  • August 10, 2004
    More than one-fifth of over 760,000 seniors whose prescription records were reviewed filled a prescription for one or more potentially inappropriate medicines, according to criteria published in the 1990s. More than 15% filled prescriptions for two drugs of concern, and 4% filled prescriptions for three or more drugs of concern. The most common potentially inappropriate drugs prescribed were amitriptyline and doxepin; the most commonly prescribed drug classes were psychotropic drugs and neuromuscular agents. Reporting this week in the Archives
  • August 6, 2004
    Regulations published in the Aug. 3, 2004 Federal Register detailing Titles I and II of the Medicare Modernization Act specify provisions for “medication therapy management.” Such services can be targeted to patients who have multiple chronic conditions, are taking multiple medications, and who are likely to have high drug expenses, according to an issue paper issued by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). So-called 'brown bag' reviews advocated by NCPIE for over a decade through its
  • August 6, 2004
    Regulations published in the Aug. 3, 2004 Federal Register detailing Titles I and II of the Medicare Modernization Act specify provisions for “medication therapy management.” Such services can be targeted to patients who have multiple chronic conditions, are taking multiple medications, and who are likely to have high drug expenses, according to an issue paper issued by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). So-called 'brown bag' reviews advocated by NCPIE for over a decade through its
  • July 19, 2004
    FDA investigators who shopped for “generic” pharmaceuticals at a purported Canadian website found substandard or altered products across the board. Safety checks such as refusing to provide a pharmaceutical product that would have put the user at risk, given their self-disclosed list of current medications, were also lacking. The FDA “shopped” at a website advertising generic productsfor brand- name pharmaceuticals for which no generics have been approved. Once the purchased products arrived at the FDA, they underwent laboratory testing and
  • June 21, 2004
    “Take With Care” is a new National Consumers League campaign urging consumers to use caution when taking over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers. Announced June 10 in New York City, NCL is partnering with the Food and Drug Administration on outreach efforts and materials.

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