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Pharmaceutical Quality Control and a Recent Recall

At the end of May, four companies announced a recall on five drugs commonly sold in Canada. The recall is not about a problem with the medications themselves, as a treatment.  Amlodipine, ciprofloxacin, norfloxacin, lamotrigine and telmisartan are all still considered to be safe and effective in their own right. Instead, the recall affects only certain batches and lot numbers. This issue provides a case study for pharmaceutical quality control from the manufacturing side of things. No pharmaceutical company wants the bad publicity of a recall, but this incident also shows the necessary redundancies in pharmaceutical quality assurance. In this.. READ MORE »

July 1, 2013

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Rx&D Report Shows 34% Under Report Rate of Innovation Investment By Government Agencies

report by Rx&D, the Canadian association of pharmaceutical companies, confirms an ongoing trend of under-reporting of pharmaceutical innovation investment by government bodies. The report, released in May, shows a consistent 34% under-reporting rate over the past three years. Pharmaceutical research investment in Canada is tracked by two government agencies, Statistics Canada and PRPMB (Patented Medicine Prices Review Board).  The agencies work independently because they are gathering information for different mandates, and use separate methodology, but both produce similar data. However, Rx&D, which is also responsible for considerable self-regulation in the pharmaceutical industry, decided to track their own investments through studies.. READ MORE »

June 13, 2013

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Should Pharmaceutical Sales Professionals Educate Doctors About Drug Risks?

A recent study of 255 physicians in Canada, the United States and France highlights the important impact of pharmaceutical sales on doctors’ decisions and physicians’ reliance on sales representatives’ willingness to educate them on the full effects of the drugs they are selling. Researchers, who looked at doctors in Montreal, Vancouver, Sacramento and Toulouse, were interested in finding out how willing sales professionals were to discuss side effects of drugs. What they found was that on average, 66% of the Canadian physicians reported that they received no information about adverse side effects whatsoever. Globally, they found that only 6% of.. READ MORE »

June 12, 2013

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Generics in Ontario

Last week we covered a generic drug pricing deal that will affect most of Canada. This week we’re coming back to Ontario to take a closer look at the local impact of the laws on generics. While generic drugs are typically sold at lower prices than the brand name option, for pharmacies, stocking them is more than a matter of choice. In the past, the cost born by the retailer was boosted by two factors: a 13% higher provincial subsidy, greater than the one for branded drugs, and the ability to get a rebate from the manufacturing company of the.. READ MORE »

June 1, 2013

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January’s Pan-Provincial Deal Means Price Cuts for Popular Generics

One of the current challenges in the pharmaceutical industry is the role of generic drugs. This January, several provinces and territories have joined together to put their combined weight to play when it comes to negotiating on generic drug pricing. Generics drugs are an important part of pharmaceutical research, manufacturing and sales. A generic drug is a non-branded version of a medication whose effects are considered comparable to the branded version. They include anything from store brand aspirin to prescription-only pain killers. Generics are cheaper than non-generic drugs and they usually only differ in small matters like flavouring. No matter.. READ MORE »

May 15, 2013

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Influencing the Future of the Pharmaceutical Industry: BIO and Assises nationales sur la recherche et l’innovation

This week, we’ll look at two big conferences that may be affecting the future policy for everything from pharmaceutical research and development funding to drug sales regulations. BIO, a large, international conference, and the Quebec-based Assises nationales sur la recherche et l’innovation. As of today, delegates from the Ontario government are meeting at the 2013 BIO conference in Chicago. An annual event spanning the participation of 65 countries, BIO is big news for anyone working or studying to be part of pharmaceutical manufacturing and research. It’s a place where pharmaceutical and medical research-boosting strategy is discussed; business and government connect;.. READ MORE »

May 14, 2013

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Pharmacies and “Expanded Services”

According to the 2011 study by the CACDS (Canadian Association of Chain Drug Stores), 42% of pharmacies in Canada offer “expanded services”. Broadly speaking, this means that pharmacies within the community offer other healthcare services in addition to dispensing prescriptions. This might be anything from weight management assistance to services for patients with depression and chronic illnesses, or it might even include specialty services like home visits or geriatric care. Among the most popular expanded services are smoking cessation assistance, diabetes maintenance and medication management. Expanded services are more common in pharmacies located in urban areas than in rural areas.. READ MORE »

May 13, 2013

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A Future for Clinical Trials in Canada

Over the past few years, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) has looked into ways to increase clinical research in Canada and help bring new medical solutions to patients quickly. This means working with public and private industries and both federal and provincial levels of government. Everyone is included in the decision-making process, from pharmacists and patients to research companies and regulatory bodies. Rx&D, a leading association of pharmaceutical research and development companies, is one of the sources for funding in Canada. They spend over a $1 Billion in research and development dollars annually, as part of their commitment.. READ MORE »

May 12, 2013

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What You Need To Know About Food Safety and Local Food Laws

We’ve talked a lot about issues of interest to people in the pharmaceutical industry, but at AAPS, a commitment to quality control and consumer safety doesn’t stop with drugs and medical manufacturing. We’re also interested in using our knowledge for food safety certification for commercial food handlers of all kinds, and for teaching the BRC food safety standards to food manufacturers. In Ontario, food handling is regulated by laws like the Food Safety and Quality Act of 2001 (last amended in 2009). The highlights of the act include the requirement, alongside regulation 562, that food handlers of all kind have.. READ MORE »

May 2, 2013


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