DRUG STORE NEWS July 2022
J U LY 2 0 2 2 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
I N S I D E
Retailers expand diabetes care Page 50
G E N E R I C A L LY
SPEAKING Challenges continue, but generics companies see a bright future with biosimilars
Challenges continue, but generics companies see a bright future with biosimilars
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PERFORMANCE AND PRECISION Leading The Field In Authorized Generics Prasco is leading the ﬁeld in Authorized Generics with a high performance crew dedicated to ﬂawless execution. Our industry leading 98% service level is keeping us ahead of the competition. Our team of industry veterans and experts are always ready to ﬁnd solutions to complex challenges along the way. Prasco is setting the pace for future success.
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Vol. 44 No. 7
INSIDE BEAUTY: PERSONAL CARE
Body care sales rise — increasing basket-building opportunities 43
INSIDE BEAUTY: SUN CARE
Sunscreen trends blend into the beauty space
HEALTH: WOMEN’S HEALTH
Inside and Out
Continued interest in self-care is driving innovation in healthcare products for women
SPEAKING Challenges continue, but generics companies see a bright future with biosimilars
PRODUCTS TO WATCH
WOMEN IN THE NEWS
Your Retailer Will See You Now
Retailers are now expanding services for people suffering from diabetes
GUEST COLUMN By Tabula Rasa HealthCare’s Jacques Turgeon and Mark A. Munger
LAST WORD By David Orgel A new look at Gen Z
DSN (ISSN 0191-7587) is published monthly 12 times a year by EnsembleIQ, 8550 W. Bryn Mawr Ave, Suite 200, Chicago, IL 60631. Subscription rate in the United States: $125 one year; $230 two year; $14 single issue copy; Canada and Mexico: $150 one year; $270 two year; $16 single issue copy; Foreign: $170 one year; $325 two year; $16 single issue copy. Periodicals postage paid at Chicago, IL, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to DSN, 8550 W. Bryn Mawr Ave, Suite 200, Chicago, IL 60631. Vol. 44 No. 7, July 2022. Copyright © 2022 by EnsembleIQ. All rights reserved.
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Health Equals Wealth Investing in preventive health measures is crucial to a strong economy By Nigel F. Maynard
“THE GOOD NEWS FOR RETAIL PHARMACIES IS THAT THEY ARE ON THE RIGHT TRACK TO BECOME HEALTHCARE DESTINATIONS, BUT THERE ARE STILL THINGS TO REMEMBER.”
I recently came across an intriguing new study that has direct and indirect implications for retail pharmacy and the push toward health care. The new report, “Health equals wealth: The global longevity dividend,” by the International Longevity Centre UK, concludes that investing in preventive health measures will be crucial to support people to stay in and return to the workforce following the pandemic. That’s a heady claim, but it works something like this. According to the study, the U.S. economy is increasingly reliant on older workers, volunteers, caregivers and spenders. That’s because 1-in-3 workers in the labor market are aged 50-plus years old (34% of the workforce) and this could rise to 42% of the workforce by 2035. In 2018, workers aged 50 and over generated nearly $2 in every $5 earned in the U.S. economy, accounting for around 15% of GDP. The report says that if the employment of people aged 50 and above could be raised to the levels seen in Iceland, the United States could see a 4% gain ($703 billion) to its gross domestic product. Spending by older households (those led by people over 50) in the U.S. averaged 20% of GDP in 2015, on aggregate amounting to $3.6 trillion. “As people live and work for longer, the government will have to innovate and think about how to foster health and well-being, flexibility and skills to create a workplace that works for the future,” said David Sinclair, chief executive of ILC-UK. “If we continue with business as usual, we will see huge shortfalls hitting all sectors of the economy.” The report calls on governments to increase spending on preventive health interventions such as vaccinations, screenings, early detection and management of disease, alongside greater support for older people’s paid and unpaid contributions. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? The good news for retail pharmacies is that they are on the right track to become healthcare destinations, but there are still things to remember. Stores still need to feel professional (like a traditional doctor’s office), waiting rooms must be part of the equation, assurance of privacy must be maintained and appointments should be easy. After all, if you’re going to become a doctor’s office, retail pharmacy must feel like a doctor’s office. dsn
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EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD John Beckner, NCPA Becky Dant, Costco J. Jeremy Faulks, Thrifty White Pharmacy Doug M. Long, IQVIA Nancy Lyons, Health Mart Pharmacy Katie Scanlon, Publix Super Markets Heidi Snyder, Drug World Pharmacies
CORPORATE OFFICERS Chief Executive Officer, Jennifer Litterick Chief Financial Officer, Jane Volland Chief Human Resources Officer, Ann Jadown EVP, Operations, Derek Estey
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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Firstline, Faith In Nature Wow at ECRM’s Hair Care and Multicultural Hair Session Firstline won the Drug Store News Buyers’ Choice Award for its Evolve Triple Edge Styler during ECRM’s Hair Care and Multicultural Hair session held in May. Faith In Nature was a finalist for its Lavender & Geranium Shampoo Bar. The products were selected from dozens of entries submitted by participating suppliers. Buyers were able to evaluate each entry and cast their votes based on product packaging and innovation via the Drug Store News-branded Buyers’ Choice Awards section of the ECRM Connect platform. “We continue to see great innovations in the hair care category, and our Buyers’ Choice Award winners are two great examples of this,” said Craig Chmielowicz, senior vice president of health and beauty care at ECRM. “One addresses convenience with a multipurpose styler, and the other helps reduce the use of plastic in personal care with its shampoo bars. Congratulations to both winners.” For more than 35 years, multicultural hair accessories company Firstline has pursued its mission to innovate high-quality hair care and fashion items that enhance the image, appearance and experience of its consumers. The brand’s Evolve Triple Edge Styler was conceptualized and invented to be the ultimate multitasking tool to groom edges, part hair and add finishing touches to any hairstyle. It’s equipped with a double-sided brush and comb combination to polish and groom edges gently using 100% boar bristle rows on one side and a fine-tooth comb on the other, with a rat-tail tip that creates sharp, frizz-free parts.
Faith In Nature was founded in 1974 by herbalist and aromatherapist Rivka Rose. Manufactured in Manchester, U.K., its family care products are made with 99% natural ingredients and 100% natural fragrances. They are SLS and paraben free, and packaged in 100% recycled bottles and cartons. The company is accredited by the Vegan Society and certified by Cruelty Free International. Its shampoo bar, made with 100% naturally derived ingredients and fragrances, is free from sulfates and ideal for consumers seeking to reduce their plastic waste. And as a solid bar, it’s also ideal for travel. According to the company, these products are free from soap, resulting in lower pH and betterlooking, healthier hair.
Walgreens Launches Clinical Trial Business Walgreens is moving into a new business space, launching a clinical trial venture that the company said will “redefine the patient experience and increase access and retention in sponsor-led drug development research.” Walgreens also said that its flexible clinical trial model combines the company’s vast foundation of patient insights, partner-enabled health and technology capabilities, and in-person and virtual care options to break through barriers to engaging broader and more diverse communities. The introduction of Walgreens’ clinical trial offerings coincides with recent steps taken by the Food and Drug Administration to increase racial and ethnic diversity in clinical trials. That’s because 20% of drugs have a variation in responses across ethnic groups, yet 75% of clinical trial
participants are white, while only 11% are Hispanic and fewer than 10% are Black and Asian, Walgreens said. “Walgreens’ trusted community presence across the nation, combined with our enterprise-wide data and health capabilities, enables us to pioneer a comprehensive solution that makes health options, including clinical trials, more accessible, convenient and equitable,” said Ramita Tandon, chief clinical trials officer at Walgreens. “Through the launch of our clinical trials services, we can provide another offering for patients with complex or chronic conditions in their care journey while helping sponsors advance treatment options for the diverse communities we serve,” Ramita said. “This is yet another way we are building our next growth engine of consumer-centric healthcare solutions.”
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Walgreens, Buckeye Health Plan Partner on Health, Wellness Services Walgreens Health, a division of Walgreens Boots Alliance that works on the development of consumer-centric and technology-enabled healthcare solutions, announced a new collaboration with Buckeye Health Plan. Together, the two companies plan on bringing innovative healthand-wellness services to Medicaid members in five northeast Ohio locations this summer. Buckeye Health Plan, an Ohio-managed care company, is the third payer to partner with Walgreens Health to launch Walgreens Health Corner locations. Walgreens Health is now contracted to serve more than 2.27 million patients, with additional partners in California and New Jersey across commercial and Medicare plan patient populations. By the end of 2022, the number of current Walgreens Health Corners will expand from 55 to approximately 100 locations. “Walgreens Health Corners are breaking down barriers and expanding access to much-needed health care, advice and services for our Medicaid members right in their neighborhoods,” said Buckeye Health Plan CEO Steve Province. “This collaboration opens the door to highly personalized, quality care given by trusted local healthcare professionals. It’s a major innovation that perfectly aligns with Buckeye’s vision to transform the health of the community, one person at a time.” Walgreens Health Corner locations will offer eligible Ohio Medicaid members access to an integrated healthcare experience led by Health Advisors, who are pharmacists or registered nurses. Health Advisors will provide a range of health and clinical services that supplement care received from primary care physicians and specialists. Patient care services and associated outcomes will be shared with Buckey Health Plan and additional patient care providers to support
individualized, holistic care. “Health care is inherently local. Our collaboration with Buckeye Health Plan will allow us to tailor our health services based on the needs of the Medicaid members and communities we serve,” said John Do, interim president and chief financial officer of Walgreens Health. “These services are designed to reduce gaps between recommended best practices for a patient’s care and the care that’s actually provided, as well as to improve care management and coordination through access to more affordable and convenient services where Buckeye Health Plan members live.” This new collaboration follows a successful 2021 pilot program between Walgreens Pharmacy and Buckeye Health Plan. Designed to support asthma and COPD patients as part of a multiphased approach, the program included consultations with patients on how to use their inhalers, proactive outreach to nonadherent patients and the use of predictive modeling to reach people at high risk for becoming nonadherent. To date, more than 1,900 pharmacist consultations have been completed, the retail chain said.
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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CVS Health Expands Free Health Screening Program in 2 States
Wonderbelly Releases Natural OTC Heartburn Medication Wonderbelly is looking to change the way people deal with their digestive health by launching its flagship product — Wonderbelly Antacid. The better-for-you, over-the-counter heartburn medication is formulated to treat heartburn, acid reflux and acid digestion symptoms, the company said. Made with non-GMO and gluten-free ingredients, the antacid does not contain talc, artificial dyes or flavors, common allergens, or artificial sweeteners. Inspired by co-founder Lucas Kraft’s journey with an eating disorder and subsequently suffering from long-lasting gut issues, his brother Noah Kraft worked alongside him to create a better, more thoughtful and tastier alternative to other products out on the market, the company said. Available in three flavors — Strawberry Milkshake, Citrus Mint and Watermelon Mint — Wonderbelly Antacid comes in plastic-free packaging and retails for $14.99 per bottle.
CVS Health is broadening its efforts to reduce health disparities via an expansion of Project Health, the company’s free, community-based health screening program. The retailer announced it is entering two new areas: Las Vegas and Richmond, Va. Project Health also will add four new mobile units this year and host dedicated events for children and seniors. “At the heart of our ongoing efforts to reduce health disparities and advance health equity is our commitment to breaking down barriers for people to access quality, affordable care,” said Sheryl Burke, senior vice president of corporate social responsibility at CVS Health. In addition to 72 dedicated events for seniors and 60 for children, CVS Health plans to host more than 1,600 Project Health screening events in 45 markets across the United States and Puerto Rico this year. The company hosts these events at CVS Pharmacy locations and community organizations, offering free biometric screenings, including blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose level and body mass index to detect early risks of chronic conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. Following these screenings, participants have the opportunity to meet with a nurse practitioner, who can provide referrals for treatment and advice on follow-up care. Since Project Health was established in 2006, the program has delivered more than $139 million in free healthcare services to more than 1.1 million Americans, with nearly 4 million biometric screenings in diverse communities that have large numbers of uninsured or underinsured people, the retail chain said.
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Kroger Increases Access to Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
Revlon Files for Bankruptcy After much speculation, Revlon has officially filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Founded more than 90 years ago in New York City, the company stated that by filing for bankruptcy, it will be given the opportunity to operate seamlessly in all markets and focus on driving future growth. In addition, the beauty brand also will be able to focus on navigating the ongoing impacts of the global supply chain challenges and rising inflation. Revlon said it expects to receive $575 million in debtor-in-possession financing, providing liquidity to support day-to-day operations. “Today’s filing will allow Revlon to offer our consumers the iconic products we have delivered for decades, while providing a clearer path for our future growth,” said Debra Perelman, Revlon’s president and CEO. “Consumer demand for our products remains strong — people love our brands, and we continue to have a healthy market position. But our challenging capital structure has limited our ability to navigate macroeconomic issues in order to meet this demand.” Following the filing, the beauty company said that its management team will continue to run its business, and as part of the reorganization process, will file customary first-day motions that will allow it to maintain operations in the ordinary course. Revlon intends to pay vendors and partners under customary terms for goods and services received on or after the filing date and pay its employees in the usual manner, while also continuing their primary benefits without interruption. “By addressing these complex legacy debt constraints, we expect to be able to simplify our capital structure and significantly reduce our debt, enabling us to unlock the full potential of our globally recognized brands,” Perelman said. “We are committed to ensuring the reorganization is as seamless as possible for our key stakeholders, including our employees, customers and vendors, and we appreciate their support during this process.”
Kroger is expanding access to electric vehicle charging stations for its customers by bringing the stations to select markets across the nation. The grocer has tested and phased in charger installations by working with Blink, Electrify America, EVgo, Tesla and Volta, the Cincinnatibased company said. “Increasing our customers’ access to EV charging stations at convenient Kroger locations supports our collective transition to a lower-carbon economy,” said Yael Cosset, senior vice president and chief information officer at Kroger. “We are leveraging technology and innovation to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and are offering customers easy ways to live a more sustainable lifestyle.” More than 350 chargers have been installed in Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Nevada, Oregon, Texas, Utah and Wyoming, with several more chargers coming by the end of the year, the retailer said. In addition, future locations will be added in Ohio, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Tennessee and Virginia.
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6/29/22 11:44 AM
Murphy’s Naturals Debuts Lemon Eucalyptus Mosquito, Tick Repellent
BJ’s Wholesale Club to Open Four New Locations BJ’s Wholesale Club shared the details of its four new locations, which are part of the next phase of its 2022 development plans. Located in Noblesville, Ind.; New Albany, Ohio; Wayne, N.J.; and Midlothian, Va., the new locations not only channel the warehouse club retailer’s mission to bring a fresh approach to the club experience, but also offer value and convenience, the Westborough, Mass.-based company said. “We’ve seen tremendous success in growing our footprint over the last several years, both in our core East Coast communities as well as in new markets like the greater Detroit and Pittsburgh areas,” said Bill Werner, executive vice president of strategy and development. “Our expansion into the greater Indianapolis and Columbus markets allows us to bring the value of our membership to these new communities we look forward to serving.” The Noblesville club will be the first BJ’s Wholesale Club in Indiana, the New Albany location marks the seventh site in Ohio, and both the Midlothian and Wayne clubs will continue to build its presence in Virginia with 13 clubs and New Jersey with 23 clubs, respectively, the company said. All four new locations will feature an extensive selection of fresh foods, a full-service deli and such household essentials as paper products, cleaning products, diapers and pet supplies, among other essentials. The warehouse clubs also will offer such convenient shopping options as digital coupons, buy online and pick up in club, curbside pickup, same-day delivery, same-day select, and ExpressPay, as well as BJ’s Gas station.
Murphy’s Naturals is debuting a brand-new line of its popular mosquito and tick repellents. New from the Raleigh, N.C.-based company is Lemon Eucalyptus Oil Mosquito & Tick Repellent Mist. Designed to go on smoothly via a one-push continuous mist, the line is free of DEET and other harsh chemicals, the brand said. It also contains a formula that harnesses the power of lemon eucalyptus oil, which is the only naturally derived ingredient recommended by the CDC to repel insects, the company said. “We’re excited to be able to provide outdoor enthusiasts with another effective and plant-based solution to help them enjoy life outdoors longer,” said founder and CEO Philip Freeman. “Because it’s made with plant-based ingredients, Lemon Eucalyptus Oil Mosquito & Tick Repellent Mist provides protection from pests with the environment in mind. It’s good for people and good for the planet.” Made to repel mosquitos for up to four hours and ticks for up to six hours, the continuous spray and broad-coverage mist make on-the-go applications easier than before, and it also will not damage outdoor gear, the company said. Murphy’s Naturals Lemon Eucalyptus Oil Mosquito & Tick Repellent Mist comes in curbside recyclable packaging, has spray technology that uses compressed air and retails for $16.99.
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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Walmart Gears up to Achieve Zero Emissions by 2040 Walmart has launched a number of new initiatives to show that it is walking the talk to help reach its goal of a zero-emissions future. “As the world’s largest retailer, with a world-class transportation network, we have the ability to make a meaningful difference when it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. That’s why in 2020, we set the goal to achieve zero emissions across Walmart’s global operations by 2040,” said Fernando Cortes, senior vice president of transportation, in a post on the retailer’s website. “This includes our last mile delivery fleet, an area that is uniquely positioned for innovative solutions,” Cortes continued. “You’ve seen us be among the first to use 100% electric self-driving cars and Class 3 trucks, electric delivery vans, and even drones. But there’s another fleet we’re committed to transforming, one that will have an even bigger impact on achieving our zero emissions goal: our Class 8 transportation fleet.” With 12,000 drivers, 10,000 tractors and 80,000 trailers driving 1.1 billion miles every year, Walmart operates one of the largest fleets in the United States, Cortes pointed out, adding: “With a fleet of this scale, it made up approximately 24% of our scope 1 emissions in 2020.” Starting early next year, the retailer will be the first transportation company to receive Cummins’ new 15-liter natural gas engine and will be adding them to a few of its trucks. This new engine is expected to deliver the same power and torque of a 15-liter diesel engine, but with significantly lower emissions, lighter weight and overall lower cost per mile than its diesel counterpart. “And to maximize the
potential emissions benefits of utilizing this technology, we have secured agreements with Chevron to supply Walmart trucks with CNG linked to renewable natural gas,” Cortes said. In just a few months, Walmart will be the first company in the United States to test the capabilities and performance of Capacity’s first second-generation hydrogen fuel cell yard truck. The truck is manufactured by Capacity in Longview, Texas, and has a range of expected benefits, including an operating time of up to 10 hours on a single refuel, faster refuel time and less dependence on the electric charging grid. “Plus, we can utilize the same infrastructure as our hydrogen forklifts while producing little to no emissions,” Cortes said. “In fact, it’s because of these benefits that we see hydrogen as an option for our long-haul over-the-road tractors — will have more to share on that soon.” Finally, as electric vehicles become more mainstream, Cortes said the retailer has been exploring where they fit into Walmart’s fleet. “Given the current weight and range capabilities of electric-battery trucks, they’re an attractive solution for yard operations, lighter weight hauls and day deliveries of around 200 miles — all of which play important roles in our operations,” he said.
Endo Joins Forces with TLC to Commercialize Treatment for Osteoarthritis Knee Pain Endo’s subsidiary Endo Ventures is partnering with Taiwan Liposom, a clinical-stage specialty pharmaceutical company, to commercialize TLC599, an injectable compound in Phase 3 development for the treatment of osteoarthritis knee pain. “TLC599 is fully aligned with our commitment to providing differentiated nonsurgical options to healthcare providers and their appropriate patients,” said Patrick Barry, executive vice president and president of global commercial operations at Endo. “This investigational product is highly synergistic with our existing orthopedic commercial capabilities and complements
our current on-market and in-development orthopedicfocused opportunities.” Endo currently expects to launch the differentiated branded product in the United States in 2025. Under the terms of the agreement, TLC will be responsible for the development of the product and EVL will be responsible for obtaining regulatory approval and commercialization of the product in the U.S. Upon receipt of regulatory approval, Endo will have exclusive rights to manufacture, market, sell and distribute the product in the U.S.
DRUGSTORENEWS.COM July 2022
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P R O D U CTS TO WATCH
New & Noteworthy HRG’s five notable products from June 2022
Product introductions slowed again in June, as inflation, rising gas prices and continued supply chain issues rattled the economy. As a result, suppliers unveiled 100 new products in June, less than half of the total from May. Waukesha, Wis.-based HRG reviewed 26 products in the health category, 23 in the wellness sector and 51 for the beauty aisle to see which ones stood out as Products to Watch. Here is what they found:
3. CeraVe Hydrating Makeup Removing Plant-Based Wipes
1. Clear Eyes Once A Day Allergy Itch Relief
4. Hawaiian Tropic Mineral Translucent Sunscreen Powder Brush
Manufactured by Prestige Consumer Healthcare, Clear Eyes Once A Day Allergy Itch Relief Drops is a prescription-strength product that contains olopatadine, a prescribed ingredient for itch relief, the company said. The drops are formulated to work in minutes and provide all-day relief from indoor and outdoor allergens, including pet dander, ragweed, pollen and grass. It’s available in a 2.5-ml bottle.
2. Dulcolax Chewy Fruit Bites Sanofi said Dulcolax Chewy Fruit Bites is a new option for constipation relief. The fruit-flavored laxative bites have a thin outer shell and soft center. They are formulated to work naturally with water in the body without stimulants and in as little as 30 minutes. It comes in a Cherry Berry flavor in a 30-count bottle.
L’Oréal’s CeraVe Hydrating Makeup Removing Plant-Based Wipes are designed to cleanse and gently remove dirt, oil and makeup — including waterproof mascara — without disrupting the protective skin barrier. Biodegradable, compostable and created with three essential ceramides, the wipes are free from surfactants, parabens, sulfates, alcohol and fragrance.
Hawaiian Tropic Mineral Translucent Sunscreen Powder Brush by Edgewell Personal Care offers a convenient way to apply and reapply sunscreen throughout the day. Formulated with 100% mineral actives, the powder offers broad spectrum UVA/ UVB protection. It is dermatologist-tested, free from parabens and oxybenzone, and is vegan and PETA-certified cruelty free. It comes in a 0.15-oz. bottle in SPF 30.
5. Allegra Hives Sanofi’s Allegra Hives tablets eliminate the application mess of topical creams and are designed for nondrowsy, minimization of symptoms of hives from the inside for 24 hours. The company said it is the only FDA-approved product to reduce hives and relieve itchiness from hives. One bottle has 30 180 mg tablets. dsn
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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Fail Safe Changing a broken approach to patient medication safety By Jacques Turgeon and Mark A. Munger
Jacques Turgeon, chief scientific officer at Tabula Rasa HealthCare, or TRHC, and CEO of TRHC’s Precision Pharmacotherapy Research and Development Institute
Mark A. Munger, professor of pharmacotherapy, adjunct professor of internal medicine and associate dean at the University of Utah College of Pharmacy
The traditional approach used by pharmacists to assess medication safety is to perform one-to-one drug pairing, multiple times, for drugs in a patient’s medication regimen, and then to determine if an interaction exists between each matchup. Many electronic health records, pharmacies and pharmacy benefit managers use this approach, but it generates several pop-ups, alert fatigue and is often flawed. A major problem with multiple one-to-one drug analyses is that the approach ignores simultaneous, multi-drug interactions, which are especially important for patients who take numerous medications. Consequently, the approach leaves patients at risk for adverse drug events that could be avoided. Indeed, more than 1 million emergency department visits a year stem from adverse drug events, which is the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. The traditional approach usually fails to incorporate a patient’s over-the-counter medications, supplements and herbals — all of which can interact with the patient’s prescriptions. In our recent research, which was published in The American Journal of Managed Care, pharmacists observed 36,455 clinically actionable medication-related problems, including adverse drug reaction, drug interaction, unnecessary medication use, adherence problem and improper drug selection among others. According to the study, over-the-counter drugs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen and diphenhydramine were among the top 20 medications that caused or contributed to the medicationrelated problems.
Importantly, the traditional medication safety approach also falls short on personalization. It does not consider how an individual patient might react to a medication based on their pharmacogenomic data. Take various opioids like codeine, hydrocodone, oxycodone and tramadol, as examples. These drugs must be transformed by a specific enzyme in the liver to effectively relieve pain. If a patient lacks functional activity (a poor metabolizer) for that enzyme or if other medications they are taking inhibit the opioid’s ability to be transformed, the patient may encounter diminished pain relief. Without this pharmacogenomic insight, the patient may be prescribed codeine for pain relief and then a higher dose when their pain persists. This could lead to unintentional misuse, instances of overdosing and drug abuse.
“In lacking precision and personalization, the traditional approach to medication safety has fostered reactive practices.” In lacking precision and personalization, the traditional approach to medication safety has fostered reactive practices. Instead, the new medication safety paradigm should center on proactive analysis. This means understanding how a new prescription, over-the-counter medication, supplement or herbal could impact a patient’s risk for adverse drug events before it gets introduced into their medication regimen. The results would help healthcare providers determine if there might be a better fit for the patient, ultimately avoiding adverse drug events and saving lives. Today, advanced clinical decision support systems that use algorithms and artificial intelligence are available to support pharmacists in their query of medication safety. Shifting the medication safety paradigm to emphasize precision, personalization and proactive analysis can prevent adverse drug events and help save lives. dsn
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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CB D N E WS
Kemin Industries Introduces Luxiva Hemp CBD Distillates
Wellness Brand Equilibria Lowers Prices, Offers One-on-One Consults Hoping to democratize plant-based wellness, Equilibria has announced a permanent price reduction on many of its wellness products, including all bundles and subscriptions. Some are now available for up to 45% off MSRP. Equilibria helps women manage through daily struggles, both physical and mental, by pairing its plant-based supplement routines with personalized support, the company said. Its offerings include CBD as well as other functional health categories and personalized education. “During this stressful time of escalating costs in most aspects of our consumer life, it’s more important than ever that access to high-quality wellness products are within reach,” said Coco Meers, CEO and co-founder of Equilibria. “We’ve worked incredibly hard with our premium supply chain to make Equilibria more affordable because when taken daily, our personalized wellness routines are transforming women’s lives. We want as many women as possible to be able to experience the positive effects on their physical and mental well-being.” The company believes that CBD and other plant-based nutriceuticals work best when taken daily, so it has increased its subscription savings from 20% to 25%. Additionally, customers who subscribe to multiple products will receive additional savings based on how many products are in their routine. Members with existing subscriptions will see the new savings reflected in their monthly bundles. As part of its new plan, the brand also is offering free, pre-purchase one-on-one wellness consultations with wellness educators around the nation to anyone interested in learning more about plant-based wellness and where to start. “The world of plant-based wellness can be really daunting,” Meyers said. “What ingredients are safe, at what levels, and how and why do they work in individual bodies to achieve specific health goals? At Equilibria, we take the time to hold space for each and every member of our community, through one-on-one telehealth sessions to help her answer these questions and empower her to find her daily routine.”
Global ingredient manufacturer Kemin Industries has announced the launch of two Luxiva CBD distillates for use in health-andwellness products. “The Kemin team is excited to announce that Luxiva hemp CBD distillates are now available to help our customers elevate their health and wellness innovation products,” said Tyler Holstein, global product manager of Kemin Human Nutrition and Health. “The line includes two new products that are USDA-certified organic and fully traceable to hemp farms in the Midwest United States. Kemin ingredients are made in facilities with third-party GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) certification and products that conform to the law and requirements governing hemp to help customers get new products to market quickly.” The new product offerings include Luxiva Full Spectrum Cannabidiol Distillate (0.3%), a hemp extract that offers a minimum of 60% CBD with a total THC content of less than 0.3%. The other is Luxiva Full Spectrum Cannabidiol Distillate (0.1%), a hemp extract that contains 60% CBD with a total THC content of less than 0.1%. Kemin said the products are all natural, non-GMO, vegan and kosher. “With all these benefits, we’re excited to offer these new hemp CBD solutions and to give our customers peace of mind when buying high-quality Luxiva hemp ingredients from Kemin,” Holstein said.
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6/27/22 10:02 PM
CBD Move Free, Rise Nation Launch New Topical Balm for Post-Workout Relief Hemp-CBD product brand CBD Move Free and Rise Nation workout studios have joined forces to produce a new balm that helps Rise Nation clients and workout enthusiasts delay the onset of muscle soreness and exerciseinduced muscle damage. A new product within the CBD Move Free line, the balm is made with 1,500 mg of CBD and was designed with Rise Nation’s high-intensity classes in mind. The product will be sold in the New York City, Dallas, Chicago and Cleveland Rise Nation locations to start, with plans to distribute the balm to the other Rise Nation studios. The Rise Nation product is available now for purchase directly on the brand’s website, cbdmovefree.com, as well as in Rise Nation’s New York City and Cleveland locations. “I’ve been using CBD Move Free balms with my clients to help them soothe sore muscles and relieve post-workout inflammation for a while now, so I was eager to work with the team to release a branded product of my own,” said Jason Walsh, expert trainer and owner of Rise Nation. “The Rise Nation experience is unlike anything else in the fitness industry, and adding a specialty product like this to the mix guarantees it will stay that way.”
Herbal Brands Releases CBD Daily Care System JoySol, part of Herbal Brands, said the newly introduced CBD Daily Care System is a trio of oil drop blends that provide physical and mental support to help users feel more prepared, focused and at peace throughout the day, the company said. Each product in the line is formulated with a dose of broad-spectrum CBD, a proprietary terpene blend and other ingredients. Offering benefits that are specific to the time of day it is intended for use (morning, midday and evening), the products help users manage and move on from everyday stress and feel ready to engage in all the summertime activities you love, the brand said. The collection includes Daily A.M. Oil Drop Blend, Daily Boost Oil Drop Blend and Daily P.M. Oil Drop Blend. Each blend retails for $49.99.
DRUGSTORENEWS.COM July 2022
6/28/22 1:46 PM
WOMEN IN THE NEWS
Vicki Ellingrod becomes the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy’s first female dean By Hannah Esper
Vicki Ellingrod is a scholar, educator and administrator who has dedicated her career to mentoring the next generation of pharmacy and translational science leaders. This month, Ellingrod will become the first female dean of the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy. We spoke with Ellingrod about what she hopes to accomplish during her fiveyear term as the college’s dean. Drug Store News: What does it mean to you to be appointed the first female dean of the U-M College of Pharmacy? Vicki Ellingrod: Many outstanding deans have led the U-M College of Pharmacy, and I have big shoes to fill. However, being the first female in this role aligns our college with the changing demographics of the pharmacy profession over the last 20 years, as the percentage of PharmD students identifying as female has become the majority, and at least half of our graduate student groups identify as female. DSN: What do you hope to accomplish during your five years as dean? VE: I strongly feel that our profession needs to take steps to ensure that the diversity of individuals in our field matches that of the U.S. population. I’m excited to work with the U-M pharmacy community — our students, faculty, staff and alumni — to accomplish this. To achieve this, we need to ensure that a U-M pharmacy education is open and accessible to all, and that prospective students, faculty and staff understand the differential advantage that the U-M College of Pharmacy brings with our tight-knit community and outstanding research enterprise. We are small by design but located within a fantastic university and academic medical center that affords us resources and innovative practices not seen by many other schools. I’m also excited to deepen the
“I strongly feel that our profession needs to take steps to ensure that the diversity of individuals in our field matches that of the U.S. population.”
Vicki Ellingrod, PharmD
commitment to our research enterprise and our graduate students by ensuring that the innovation realized by our faculty, staff and students is effectively translated into practice to improve human health. DSN: What would you say to someone considering entering the pharmacy field right now? VE: I would say what I have always said: With a pharmacy degree, and in particular a U-M pharmacy degree, your career possibilities are endless, and the impact you make on the world is up to you. You can see this in the careers chosen by our alumni, from working in rural underserved areas in community pharmacy to leading worldwide therapeutic development in the pharmaceutical industry to serving as the CEO for national pharmacy organizations. Additionally, many of our faculty have started their own companies based on their research innovations or have developed advanced practice models that the CDC has identified as best practices. DSN: What do you like to do to decompress? VE: I am someone who loves to walk and ride my bike, as both these activities give me time to think. However, whenever possible, my family and I love to do game nights, which has become more challenging as my children are now in college, and one of my daughters is studying abroad. I also love to travel and explore new places. DSN: What’s your favorite Ann Arbor restaurant? VE: I’m not a big foodie, and if given a choice, I would instead enjoy a veggie burger and beer at a local biergarten with my family and friends. Thus, Corner Brewery in Ypsilanti, Mich., just next to Ann Arbor, is my favorite place to go. dsn
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SPEAKING Challenges continue, but generics companies see a bright future with biosimilars B Y
N O R A
C A L E Y
More than just inexpensive substitutes, generic drugs offer a glimpse into certain issues that pharmaceutical companies are facing now. While consumers depend on generics as a low-cost alternative to brand medications, the category is a complex one that is enduring the usual challenges plus some unusual barriers to success. Meanwhile, the state of the generics category is also benefiting from exciting innovations, notably biosimilars. One of the biggest trends right now relates to pricing. While other categories are seeing inflation, generics are experiencing deflation. That’s due to many factors, but one of the main drivers is the influx of newly approved medicines, resulting in increased competition in a crowded market. Meanwhile, the industry is also handling more typical challenges of supply chain constraints, rising manufacturing costs and the emergence of buying groups. Industry executives say they are adapting by moving manufacturing and focusing on biosimilars.
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Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved fewer generic drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic than during previous years, there were still plenty of approvals. According to annual reports from the Office of Generic Drugs, or OGD, in 2019 the generic drug program approved or tentatively approved 1,014 generic drug applications, known as Abbreviated New Drug Applications, or ANDAs, and 107 first generic drugs. In 2020, the OGD approved 948 ANDAs and 72 first generics. In 2021, the figures were 776 ANDAs and 93 first generics. The reports noted that first generics, which provide access to therapies where no previous competition existed, are particularly important to public health and the OGD prioritizes the review of first generic drug submissions.
Generics make up
of prescriptions and account for
COMPETITION INCREASES Naturally, increasing competition is presenting challenges for the industry. “The past several years has been a difficult time for generics,” said John Dillaway, executive vice president of Parsippany, N.J.-based Ascend Labs. “The rate of product deflation has been unprecedented. The number of competitors versus the available number of customers has created a super competitive environment.” Add to that, Dillaway said, is the supply of active pharmaceutical ingredients, or API, and the supply of key starting materials, or ingredients used to make the API, have been challenging. “In order to grow, generic companies must be well positioned to gain continued approvals and have a strong supply chain,” he said. “Also, releasing new off-patent molecules allows for new revenues that can offset some of the deflation on legacy items and provide a pathway for growth.” For its part, Ascend aspires to gain between 12 to 15 new approvals each year, and Dillaway said the company is on pace to achieve that this year. The generics space has dozens of players, according to Andy Boyer, executive vice president and chief commercial officer at Amneal Generics in Bridgewater, N.J. Citing a Wall Street analyst’s report, Boyer said the average generic product has six competitors. “Ongoing competition in the U.S. generics market continues to increase pressure for inline and pipeline product rationalization,” he said. Boyer also noted that there has been much movement of manufacturing to lower-cost countries. Manufacturers are evaluating R&D investment in the United States versus the rest of the world, and finding that return on investment in the U.S. for traditional products has little value, except for complex products. “Significant perpetual pricing pressure due to competition and buying power of large retail pharmacies — particularly for the less complex products such as oral solids, which can have 10-plus competitors — has led to product rationalization and discontinuance of many products,” he said. To respond to these challenges, Amneal is evolving its pipeline. “We’ve prioritized complex products,” Boyer said. “Over half of our generics revenue and 86% of pipeline is non-oral solids.” In small molecule generics, the shift from oral solids to complex generics is important, he said, as there is less competition, often two to three players. Also, these innovations are more impactful, such as new affordable therapies for patients in areas like women’s health or cancer. Among Amneal’s recent innovations are Zafemy birth control patch and Abiraterone Acetate for metastatic pancreatic cancer, both launched in 2021.
of invoice-level spending. SOURCE: IQVIA
Other manufacturers agree that innovation will be the key to success in the current environment. “The name of the game is ‘First to Market,’” said Milan Kalawadia, senior vice president of U.S. commercial operations at Dr. Reddy’s. “As the dynamics are getting ever more aggressive and competitive, if you are late to the game, chances are you missed your opportunity.” The Princeton, N.J.-based Dr. Reddy’s is focused on new product launches and continuing the momentum that it gained over the last three years, which saw 70 or more launches. There are challenges though, and not just the usual issues of supply chain constraints and ingredient shortages. Kalawadia points to the emergence of buying groups that negotiate on behalf of their members. “Over the years, more and more of these groups have started to pop up, so we’ve got a smaller subset of customers to work with as a result,” he said. “We’re still talking with the same pharmacies, we’re still strategizing with the same buyers, but when it comes to the decision-making process, we’re working with these buying groups.”
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ACTIVE INGREDIENTS Extensive portfolio of more than 250 API products across various categories such as anti-infectives, peptides, biosimilars, vaccines, polymers and more.
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The name of the game is ‘First to Market.’ As the dynamics are getting ever more aggressive and competitive, if you are late to the game, chances are you missed your opportunity. — MILAN KALAWADIA, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT OF U.S. COMMERCIAL OPERATIONS, DR. REDDY’S
The solution for Dr. Reddy’s, Kalawadia said, has been the three pillars of product quality, ability to supply product on time and being competitive with price points. The use of branded and generic drugs is increasing. According to “U.S. Medicines Trends 2022 Report,” released in April by the IQVIA Institute for Human Data Science, prescription drug use reached a record 194 billion daily doses in 2021. Days of therapy from all types of prescription medicines grew 3.3% in 2021, a rebound from the 1.9% growth in 2020 when usage was disrupted by the pandemic. When people canceled or postponed certain healthcare appointments, new prescriptions for acute and chronic therapies decreased. COVID-related medicines accounted for part of the growth, and the non-COVID medicines market grew more slowly at 5%. The IQVIA report also showed that generics make up 92% of prescriptions and account for 16% of invoice-level spending. At the same time, generics account for 65% of patients’ out-of-pocket costs.
BIOSIMILARS GENERATE EXCITEMENT Among the trends, the report noted, is the growing impact of biosimilars, which increased significantly, offsetting increased use of branded medicines. Oncology is a big area for biosimilars, and manufacturers have an opportunity to generate revenue from biosimilar versions of three
molecules in the oncology market, in particular — bevacizumab, rituximab and trastuzumab — because these three had recent losses of exclusivity, or LOE. Biosimilars will reduce biologic spending by $40 billion through 2026, the report projected. Manufacturers acknowledge that biosimilars are the future. “Biosimilar adoption in the U.S. continues to grow at a healthy rate,” said Harsher Singh, senior vice president of Amneal Biosciences. “We expect savings created in the healthcare system from biosimilars to outstrip generics over time.” Amneal announced three products approved this year: Releuko, a filgrastim biosimilar referencing Neupogen; Alymsys, a bevacizumab biosimilar referencing Avastin; and Fylnetra, a pegfilgrastim biosimilar referencing Neulasta. “We see this as the next wave of affordable medicines that’s still in its early innings,” Singh said. “We are positioning ourselves to play a large, critical and long-term role in this market, where portfolio and key capabilities across the value chain matter, similar to complex generics.” The industry expects much from biosimilars. “FDA-approved biosimilars are beginning to deliver on their promise to reduce costs,” said Dan Leonard, CEO of the Washington-based Association for Accessible Medicines. “These medicines have scientifically comparable quality, safety and efficacy to their reference biologic and create competition in high-cost markets, resulting in lower costs and broader patient access.” Leonard also said that biosimilar medicines have an average cost savings of nearly 50% versus the brand biologic. “Importantly, biosimilar competition also results in lowering brand biologic costs by more than 25% on average,” he said. According to AAM’s “2021 Generic Drug and Biosimilars Savings in the U.S.” report, biosimilar uptake has reduced the growth rate of oncology spending roughly by half since 2019. This reduction in growth, along with continued use of generic cancer medicines, contributed to a total of $18 billion saved on oncology medicines in 2020. “Generic and biosimilars represent the only segment of health care in the U.S. that consistently reduces costs,” Leonard said. “The use of generic and biosimilar
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medicines generated more than $338 billion in savings for the healthcare system in 2020.” Manufacturers agree that this is an exciting time to be in the generics, and especially biosimilar, space. “Some of the biggest opportunities in generics are in the more complex molecules, including but not limited to biosimilars,” said Paul McMahon, president of commercial operations at East Windsor, N.J.-based Aurobindo Pharma USA. The company is
Biosimilar uptake has reduced the growth rate of oncology spending roughly by half since 2019. SOURCE: IQVIA
Barriers to Keeping Prices Down Generics help save consumers and other payers money, but certain practices are resulting in higher prices and delayed access to generics and biosimilars, said Dan Leonard, CEO of the Association for Accessible Medicines, or AAM. Leonard noted two of the practices contributing to higher prices: placing generic drugs on nongeneric formulary tiers and preferring high-cost, high-rebate drugs over lower-priced alternatives. One issue is that first generics are usually not covered by plan formularies. He noted that in 2021, in the Medicare drug program, only 21% of first generics that were launched in 2020 were covered by plan formularies. “Data show that it normally takes three years for first generics to be covered on more than half of Medicare Part D formularies,” he said. “And once generics do get covered by Part D formularies, the story does not improve.”
Leonard said an ongoing review of generic drug formulary placement in Medicare plans from 2016 to 2022 showed a trend of pharmacy benefit managers placing more generics on nongeneric tiers with higher cost sharing. More generics were on nongeneric tiers (57%) than on generic tiers (43%). “While this data comes from the Medicare market, anecdotal reports suggest that similar behavior occurs in the commercial market,” he said. “These practices allow PBMs to generate additional revenue through higher copays for generic drugs, but result in patients unnecessarily paying more at the pharmacy counter.” In May, AAM filed comments with the Federal Trade Commission outlining the two above practices and noting PBMs’ negotiating power. The AAM and its Biosimilars Council urged the FTC to investigate the practices and study the vertical consolidation of the PBM industry. Separately, legislation could offer a solution. The Access to Lower-Cost Medicines for Seniors Act (H.R. 2846), introduced in April 2021, establishes additional requirements for prescription drug plan, or PDP, sponsors that use formularies under the Medicare prescription drug benefit. The bill requires PDP formularies to include covered generic drugs and biosimilars for which the wholesale acquisition cost is less than that of the reference (brand) product. PDP sponsors must also establish a dedicated specialty tier for covered generic drugs and biosimilars. The bill also prohibits PDP sponsors from instituting certain requirements relating to access to such covered generic drugs and biosimilars that are more restrictive than those for brand-name products. “The work to encourage biosimilar adoption in Part D is just beginning and will grow in importance as more biosimilars enter the Part D market,” Leonard said.
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Importantly, biosimilar competition also results in lowering brand biologic costs by more than 25% on average. — DAN LEONARD, CEO, ASSOCIATION FOR ACCESSIBLE MEDICINES
expanding into biosimilars via a partnership with another company. Another area of growth is product differentiation, through formulation development and novel delivery methods of complex products. This list of specialty products includes metered-dose inhalers, dry powder inhalers and transdermal patches. Aurobindo has a 40,000-sq.-ft. facility in North Carolina, where the specialty research and development team works on inhalers, patches and other products. In fiscal year 2022, McMahon said, Aurobindo Pharma filed 57 ANDAs and received final approval for 45 ANDAs. The company, which also launched and relaunched 24 products, has approximately 200 pending approvals. “In addition to our robust organic pipeline, we recently acquired a portfolio of 45 product families, as well as a new FDA-approved 269,000-sq.-ft. manufacturing facility located in Puerto Rico,” he said. The Puerto Rico manufacturing facility acquisition provides Aurobindo with a steady stream of new competitive medicines to launch in the future, and increases the company’s U.S.-based manufacturing footprint. The timing is opportune, McMahon said, as there is an ongoing push by the government and private stakeholders for more onshoring of drug manufacturing. “We believe there is opportunity in continuing to build scale and selfsustainability into our operation to drive efficiency into the process and costs and overheads out,” McMahon said. “This is a highly competitive market, so there must be a vigilant focus on growing and simultaneously leaning the operation to maintain our ability to produce the enormous scale of life-saving and -sustaining medicines that we do for the U.S. and globally.” The future will likely see more deflation and more competition. Also according to the IQVIA report, spending on oncology drugs will slow over the next few years, as expirations of brand drug patents will drive more biosimilars and generics, which will offset the price increases of new treatments. Also, upcoming innovations, which include generics for Humira in 2023 and ustekinumab (Stelara) as early as 2024, will also contribute to lower costs. Generics firms are confident that they are ready for the challenge. “We are positioned to handle the realities of this marketplace,” said Dr. Reddy’s Kalawadia. “Our generics division has navigated such challenges in the past, and we will continue to be a leading player in the generics industry in the U.S. Our current and future growth strategies will only help strengthen our position in the industry while also driving significant growth for Dr. Reddy’s.” dsn
Mark Cuban’s Generics Play WHAT WILL THE BILLIONAIRE’S NEW DRUG COMPANY MEAN FOR THE INDUSTRY? Billionaire businessman and owner of the Dallas Mavericks professional basketball team Mark Cuban shocked the retail pharmacy world when he announced earlier this year the creation of a new online pharmacy to drastically expand access to affordable pharmaceuticals. “We will do whatever it takes to get affordable pharmaceuticals to patients,” Alex Oshmyansky, CEO of Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug, said at the time of the announcement. “The markup on potentially lifesaving drugs that people depend on is a problem that can’t be ignored. It is imperative that we take action and help expand access to these medications for those who need them most.” As the company explained, it is a registered pharmaceutical wholesaler, so it will bypass middlemen and outrageous markups. The pharmacy’s prices reflect actual manufacturer prices plus a flat 15% margin and pharmacist fee. With the help of digital healthcare company Truepill, patients can expect a seamless, secure e-commerce experience as they navigate the pharmacy’s website, built and powered by Truepill’s digital health platform, the company said. “As an entrepreneur, any time I see an industry that’s been run the same way for decades, if not generations, and it’s been obfuscated to the point where there’s no transparency and you have associations trying to protect that opaqueness, to me that’s an opportunity and that’s exactly what we saw with the prescription drug industry,” Cuban told the “PBS Newshour” in June. “And by adding transparency and our approach at Cost Plus Drugs, which is we’ll show you our actual cost, we’ll mark it up 15%, we’ll add $3 pharmacy handling fee and $5 shipping. And that’s all you ever pay.” Reviews are mixed on what this new endeavor will mean for traditional retail pharmacies. — Nigel F. Maynard
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Generics New Product Launches The following are some recently announced or launched generics and biosimilars
Alembic, Bedminster, N.J. Cosette Pharmaceuticals, in collaboration with Aleor Dermaceuticals, a wholly owned subsidiary of Alembic Pharmaceuticals, announced that the FDA approved the ANDA for an NBE version of Abreva (docosanol cream 10%) in a 2 g tube and pump formats. Abreva is a licensed trademark of GlaxoSmithKline. This approval represents the first ANDA approval in the pump format, and Cosette plans to launch the product across the U.S. retail channel. Amneal Pharmaceuticals, Bridgewater, N.J. Amneal Pharmaceuticals announced FDA approval of the Biologics License Application, or BLA, for filgrastim-ayow, a biosimilar referencing Neupogen. The product will be marketed under the proprietary name Releuko, and is used to treat neutropenia (low neutrophils, a type of white blood cells that fight infection), which is commonly experienced by patients undergoing chemotherapy. Releuko was developed in collaboration with Kashiv Biosciences in Chicago. According to IQVIA, U.S. annual sales for filgrastim in 2021 were $407 million, of which $275 million represents biosimilars. Amneal also announced that the FDA approved the company’s BLA for bevacizumab-maly, a biosimilar referencing Avastin. The product, which will be marketed under the proprietary name Alymsys, represents the third bevacizumab biosimilar approved in the United States. Alymsys was developed by mAbxience, a global biotech company. Bevacizumabmaly is a vascular endothelial growth factor inhibitor used in oncology. According to IQVIA, U.S. annual sales for bevacizumab for the 12 months ending February 2022 were $2.6 billion, $1.6 billion of which represented biosimilars. In May, Amneal revealed that the FDA approved the company’s BLA for pegfilgrastim-pbbk, a biosimilar referencing Neulasta. Developed in collaboration with Kashiv Biosciences, the product will be marketed under the proprietary name Fylnetra, which is used to treat neutropenia. According to IQVIA, U.S. annual sales for pegfilgrastim for the 12 months ending March 2022 were $3.1 billion, $1 billion of which represented biosimilars. ANI Pharmaceuticals, Baudette, Minn. Misoprostol tablets, 100 mcg and 200 mcg, are the generic version of the reference listed drug, or RLD, Cytotec. The current annual U.S. market for misoprostol tablets, 100 mcg
and 200 mcg, is approximately $15.3 million, according to IQVIA/IMS Health, a healthcare data and analytics provider. The company also announced that it has received FDA approval for the ANDA for fludrocortisone acetate tablets USP, 0.1 mg, the generic version of the RLD Florinef. The current annual U.S. market for fludrocortisone acetate tablets, 0.1 mg is approximately $24.2 million, IQVIA/IMS Health said.
Aurobindo, East Windsor, N.J. Azelastine hydrochloride nasal spray 0.1% (137 mcg per spray) is Aurobindo’s first product launch in the United States utilizing a pump nasal spray delivery system. The development and launch of azelastine demonstrates Aurobindo’s strategic push into alternative delivery systems, which includes metered-dose inhalers, prefilled syringes and transdermal patches. Azelastine hydrochloride nasal spray 0.1% is an AB-rated generic equivalent to the reference listed drug Astelin by Mylan Specialty LP. According to IQVIA, azelastine hydrochloride nasal spray 0.1% has an estimated market value of $48.6 million for the 12 months ending April 2022. Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories, Princeton, N.J. A collaboration between Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories and Senores Pharmaceuticals, ketorolac tromethamine tablets USP, 10 mg is a therapeutic generic equivalent of the reference listed drug Toradol tablets 10 mg. Ketorolac tromethamine tablets USP, 10 mg is an NSAID indicated for the short-term (up to five days in adults) management of moderately severe acute pain that requires analgesia at the opioid level and only as continuation treatment following intravenous or intramuscular dosing of ketorolac tromethamine. The Toradol tablets, 10 mg brand and generic had U.S. sales of approximately $16.8 million moving annual target, or MAT, for the 12 months ending March 2022, according to IQVIA. Fresenius Kabi, Lake Zurich, Ill. Fresenius Kabi introduced bortezomib for injection, a new generic equivalent to Velcade in the United States. Fresenius Kabi bortezomib for injection is available in a 3.5 mg per 10 ml single-dose vial presentation for subcutaneous or intravenous use. It is an affordable treatment option for adult patients with multiple myeloma and mantle cell lymphoma. Hikma Pharmaceuticals, Berkeley Heights, N.J. Hikma Pharmaceuticals launched benztropine mesylate injection, USP through its U.S. affiliate, Hikma Pharmaceuticals USA. The company released 2 mg/2 ml dose in vial format. Hikma also markets ampoules of this product, and this launch broadens the choice of medicines available to hospitals. Benztropine mesylate injection, USP is indicated as an adjunct in the therapy of all forms of parkinsonism. According to IQVIA, U.S. sales were approximately $5 million in the 12 months ending December 2021.
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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Influence Retail Clinicians Treating Patients Retail clinicians recommend healthcare products to patients and shoppers everyday—make sure they recommend your brand first!
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of consumers have asked a retail healthcare practitioner for product advice, even when they are not there for an appointment.
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filled at least part of their prescription at the same store.
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Skin Deep Body care sales rise — increasing basket-building opportunities The days of lounging in a bath for long periods or partaking in 10-step skin care programs may be over, but the importance of taking care of skin is stronger than ever. Even as consumers return to work and social activities, they fit body care into their wellness routines. For 2022, skin care is about the face as well as the entire body. New items for “below the neck” are proliferating, delivering basket-building opportunities to mass market retailers, according to Yarden Horwitz, co-founder of Spate, a company that uses data science to predict product trends. “The skinification of body care is here,” she said. “Skin care ingredients like collagen and retinol are making their way down to the body,” Horwitz said. “This reveals a great opportunity for brands to create ingredient-driven, largeformat products to help consumers achieve hydrated, glowing skin beyond their face.”
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The same ingredients and product trends that took facial skin care sales to new heights in 2020 and 2021 will have a similar impact on body care. “The traction gained in hair and facial hair care, along with the beauty customers’ expectations for innovative, clean, plantbased ingredients, recycled packaging and purpose-driven ethos will ultimately be seen in body care,” said Angel Cornelius, CEO and co-founder of Maison 276, a brand that markets skin and hair care for all complexions and ages.
Searches for shower steamers were up almost
in March of 2022. Source: Spate
The most recent IRI figures validate consumer interest in skin care for the entire body. For the 52 weeks ending May 15, 2022, in multiunit doors, hand and body product sales escalated almost 5%. Facial skin care, while still important, slowed from double-digit inclines over the past two years. Bath product sales that bubbled to the top in 2020 declined 0.5% as consumers had less time to relax in a bath. Yet Spate data suggests interest in getting the bath experience without filling up the tub: searches for shower steamers were up almost 40% in March of 2022. Spate identified other fertile categories that focus on specific body parts. Breast care is one where searches for “boob cream” rose more than 25%. There are already prestige products for breasts, such as Décolletage Treatment Balm by Yina and a line from Femme and Flora. Okay Naturals was a trailblazer
Multifunctional products thrive during periods of uncertainty, which was the case during the financial crisis, and that same pattern is expected. — Kayla Villena, industry manager of beauty and personal care, Euromonitor
in natural ingredients, but also in products that target body parts. Leveraging its expertise in conscious formulas, Okay offers a Detox Foot Soak using Himalayan pink salt, lavender and tea tree oil. Pure for Men has another body part in mind: It markets Bum Balm Self Care for down there. The mint and clove moisturizer eliminates and fights odors. Yamit Sadok, senior director of marketing at Reserveage Beauty, highlights her company’s Pro-Collagen Booster skin care collection as an example. “It is designed for the whole body,” she said, pointing to a Firming Neck Cream and the Hydrating Hand and Foot Cream in the lineup. Other budding body care categories, based on Spate searches, are tattoo lotions (Mad Rabbit is one brand), chafing remedies and exfoliating gloves.
From Clean to Clinical Body care used to be about anti-aging, but that has been supplanted by a quest for health and self-esteem. Americans said the No. 1 perception they have about beauty is “being comfortable in your own skin,” according to a Euromonitor International study. That was followed by looking healthy, inner confidence and embracing yourself. The lowest response was rejuvenation. The focus on wellness encouraged consumers to eyeball ingredients in their products. Although the United States is making headway in eliminating potentially toxic ingredients, without regulation there is still confusion of what is natural or clean. The potential for brands to “clean wash” remains. The result: Consumers are transitioning from clean to clinical, according to Kayla Villena, industry manager of beauty and personal care at Euromonitor. They want scientifically supported ingredients and brands, and often seek advice from experts, such as dermatologists, on social platforms. “Brands that have sciencebacked credentials and proven efficacy are poised to do well over the next five years, especially dermocosmetics [products with sophisticated active ingredients, often created with dermatologists],” she said. Shoppers are searching more often by ingredients rather than brands. Active ingredients that support skin health, especially those with moisturizing and skin barrier protection benefits, with sustainably sourced ingredients, will perform well in the next five years, according to Euromonitor research. As consumers seek education, they are turning to social media — TikTok in particular — and websites. More educated shoppers, called “skintellectuals,” know their niacinamides from their bakuchiols. “We find a trend of customers prioritizing self-educating themselves about the ingredients that are typically used in traditional body care products, and seeing that the same trend that occurred with hair care and skin care of requiring clean products is now increasing,” said Rochelle Graham-Campbell, CEO and co-founder of Alikay Naturals. “Whether it is regular body care or feminine care, Alikay Naturals is committed
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to our results-driven, holistic approach in developing products that provide solutions for customers through our bath and body collection and the HER feminine care collection,” she said. Among the ingredients moving the needle are ceramides, glycolic acids, vitamin E, hemp, hyaluronic acids, elastin, Brazil nut, chlorophyll, probiotics, algae, retinol and urea, according to retailer interviews. Brands are reacting with items infused with sought-after ingredients. Dove’s Body Love Collection features a Restoring Ceramide Serum that the company said strengthens the skin barrier to retain moisture. RoC Skincare is gaining traction for its clinically proven retinol range that is backed by dermatologists. Sales are up 21% year to date based on Nielsen data through March 26, 2022.
The At-Home Spa Has Staying Power IPO Cosmetics has been a benefactor of the pandemic-fueled trend to perform more skin care rituals at home. “Our consumers stopped going to the spa and [they] use our 4-Step Facial Kits because they are able to achieve the same results,” said Michelle Kim, CEO of It’s Perfect On. “You’re getting high-quality ingredients for a fraction of the price. In under 20 minutes, you can achieve hydrated, glowing skin.” The at-home experience can benefit mental health, said Graham-Campbell. “When customers use our products like our Tropical Splash Body Icing, they can experience a moment of pause by not only applying to their body but maybe also speaking positive words while doing so,” she said. Products doing double duty are a growth opportunity in body care. “Multifunctional products thrive during periods of uncertainty, which was the case during the financial crisis, and that same pattern is expected,” Villena said.
Body Care with Purpose Like many personal care categories, body care packaging is under the microscope for excessive packaging. Newer digitally native and indie brands are being developed with social causes, waste reduction and circular systems in mind, which give them an advantage over other brands, according to Euromonitor’s Villena. Beauty brands that highlight the importance
of mental health, universal design (such as braille, easy to open for consumers with differing levels of ability, etc.) and positive benefits for the environment will be in high demand, Villena said, adding that packaging waste reduction will be key, as companies aim to meet their sustainability commitments. The 99% plastic-free positioning encouraged Walgreens to add Hey Humans to its assortment this year, according to Lauren Brindley, Walgreens’ group vice president of personal care and beauty. At Unilever, sustainable packaging, product formulation and responsible sourcing are top of the checklist. “We’re really excited about our recent launch of Dove’s refillable body wash, which is now available at major retailers including Target, Walmart and Amazon,” said Niki King, head of sustainability at Unilever. Urban Hydration is a company with altruistic endeavors. The brand has a partnership with WATERisLIFE, enabling the company to donate a gallon of drinking water to a community that does not have easy access.
Beauty’s New Big Bet: Oral Care The skinification trend is also overtaking another personal care segment — oral care. “Oral health can really help people think about their overall health. We talk so much about confidence in beauty and feeling and looking great … one great smile is a really good piece of that story,” said Andrea Harrison, vice president of merchandising, beauty and personal care at CVS. dsn
Hello Products Gum Nourishmint Fluoride Toothpaste
SRP: $6.99 “We see ingredients like coconut oil, charcoal and natural mint continue to be ingredients that consumers are looking for,” said Rekha Rao, CEO of Hello Products. “Some new ingredients that we see really making their way into oral care from personal care are hyaluronic acid, hemp seed oil and tea tree oil.” Hello’s new Gum Nourishmint is an example. The fluoride toothpaste features a hyaluronic complex and comes in a sweet mint flavor.
Tom’s of Maine PurActiv Teeth + Gum Health Toothpaste
SRP: $6.99 Tom’s, known for its natural formulas way before that concept came into vogue, is harnessing purified zinc and sea salt to deliver a deep clean with its latest launch: PurActiv Teeth + Gum Health Toothpaste.
White Glo Accelerator Teeth Whitening Kit SRP: $39.95 Australia’s No. 1 teeth whitener brand is coming to the United States. Formulated by dentists, the range of full oral care products is vegan and cruelty free.
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Protect Yourself Sunscreen trends blend into the beauty space By Gisselle Gaitan
Companies within the sun care category are constantly striving for ways to not only be sustainable and friendly to the environment but to also be a seamless part of a person’s daily beauty routine. Staying environmentally friendly and finding ways to protect and hydrate the skin are goals that Green Goo’s Solar Goo brand has been working on since its inception in 2008. “Solar Goo SPF-30 has seven plant-based, reefsafe ingredients, which not only help contribute to sun protection but also nourish the skin while being sensitive to the environment,” said Jodi Scott, CEO of Green Goo. “We like to think that we are actually at the forefront of sunscreen trends.” Reef safe is a buzzword that has been trending heavily since 2018 when Hawaii became the first state to pass legislation (SB2028) that prohibits the distribution of sunscreens containing the chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate. These have been found to have a toxic effect on the marine ecosystem. Following the passage of SB2028 legislation, several other states and territories — including the U.S. Virgin Islands; Aruba; Key West, Fla.;
Bonaire; Palau; and several parts of Mexico — have followed suit to ensure the harmful chemicals are no longer included in the sunscreens sold within their locations. Since then, sunscreen brands have begun to do their part to protect the environment and marine ecosystems by creating products for consumers that no longer contain the noxious ingredients. “One hundred percent of our products are free from oxybenzone and octinoxate: two ingredients believed to cause potential damage to the coral reefs,” said Caroline Malone, senior marketing manager at Edgewell Personal Care, parent company of Hawaiian Tropic. “We’ve pioneered the removal of these ingredients from our formulas to help protect our oceans.”
As a responsible brand, it’s important to make sure that our entire body care assortment is eco-friendly with a low carbon footprint. — Jodi Scott, CEO, Green Goo
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Neutrogena Sun Rescue After Sun Replenishing Lotion
SRP: $15.99 Designed to rehydrate and replenish skin, the lotion features a blend of ingredients, including aloe vera, mint extract and vitamin E. The lotion helps users obtain 24-hour hydration, prevents peeling skin and is ideal for sensitive skin that has been exposed to the sun.
Hawaiian Tropic Mineral Powder Brush SPF 30
Eucerin Sun Advanced Hydration Spray
SRP: $7.99 to $13.99 Made with a multibeneficial sunscreen formula that contains five antioxidants and hyaluronic acid to help hydrate, the spray works to replenish the skin’s natural moisture, leaving it feeling supple for up to eight hours. This nonalcoholic lotion spray provides UVA/UVB protection for all skin tones, is hypoallergenic, sweatresistant and water-resistant for up to 80 minutes.
Sun Bum Tinted Sunscreen Lip Balm SPF 15
SRP: $5.99 A color-tinted lip balm that provides UVA/UVB protection, this product features subtle and natural tones. Available in Nude Beach, Sand Bar, Sunset Cove, Bonfire and Raisin Hell shades, the line is gluten free, cruelty free, hypoallergenic, paraben free, dermatologist-tested and oxybenzone free.
Instead, brands such as Solar Goo have opted to include calendula, coconut oil and zinc oxide in their products to hydrate, moisturize and provide broadspectrum protection from UVB to UVA1 rays. “As a responsible brand, it’s important to make sure that our entire body care assortment is eco-friendly with a low carbon footprint,” Scott said. Hawaiian Tropic also has continued to push cleanliness and environmentally friendly formulas forward within its sun care range. “Our formulas are all tested to ensure that they are safe and effective to protect against sun damage and premature aging,” Malone said. “They’re also PETA-certified cruelty free, meaning they are developed with absolutely no animal testing.” Aside from eliminating harmful ingredients from their sun care products, companies behind various popular product lines have begun dipping their toes in the beauty and cosmetic space by launching face and eye creams with SPF. One of the most notable brands in this space is Supergoop, which has grown its portfolio and popularity beyond typical sunscreen products. Hawaiian Tropic also has entered the category by launching a powder that contains SPF and can be used on its own or during makeup application. “We are continuing to recognize sun care needs, including those that cross into the beauty category,” Malone said. Meeting the beauty and SPF needs of consumers is important to brands that are striving to bring sun care products to market, especially those offerings that
SRP: $16.99 Designed as a convenient way to apply and reapply SPF throughout the day, the powder is made with naturally sourced sea minerals to absorb excess oil. Featuring an easy-to-use brush, the powder provides a matte finish and can be used on its own, under makeup or even after to help it set.
are suitable for people with normal or sensitive skin. “Our face SPF products have been created specifically for everyday use as a key part of our consumers’ skin care regimen,” Malone said. “These dermatologist-tested formulas are hypoallergenic, oil free and won’t clog pores.” Beauty needs go beyond just ensuring the face is protected from harmful rays. Lips also need to be protected from the sun, and Solar Goo is working to ensure consumers are protected from their forehead to chin. “While we already have our Sweet Honey Lip Balm with SPF, we are currently testing other lip balm varieties with even greater SPF protection,” Scott said. Although sunscreen is more popular within the warmer months of the year, the category is focusing on educating consumers about the importance of using SPF products year-round. Whether it’s in a typical sunscreen bottle or combined with daily makeup essentials such as lip balm, this is a category that is continuing to evolve and take shape within current beauty trends. dsn
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TREAT ACNE AND
MAINTAIN THE SKIN BARRIER A ceramide-containing skincare regimen can improve skin barrier function and reduce potential for irritation, which may help patients better tolerate their acne treatment plan.1
Acne Control Cleanser treats acne, targets pores, and prevents breakouts
Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser treats stubborn acne and active flare-ups without irritation
Resurfacing Retinol Serum helps reduce the appearance of post-acne marks
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Acne Control Gel visibly clears skin and reduces the appearance of pores
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†U.S. News & World Report, Pharmacy Times, 2022-2023. ‡IQVIA, ProVoice Survey: Latest 12 months rolling, ending Nov 2021. REFERENCE: 1. Lynde CW, Andriessen A, Barankin B, et al. Moisturizers and ceramide-containing moisturizers may offer concomitant therapy with benefits. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2014;7(3):18-26. CeraVe is a registered trademark. All other product/brand names and/or logos are trademarks of the respective owners. ©2022 CeraVe LLC CVE.A.P.1255
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HEALTH: WOMEN’S HEALTH
Inside and Out Continued interest in self-care is driving innovation in healthcare products for women By Carol Radice
Here are two things we know about the state of women’s health care today: Women are becoming more educated about their own bodies, and they are prioritizing their mental and physical well-being. COVID may have accelerated this development, but all signs point to this trend continuing to build momentum, especially as consumers of all ages are demanding better care and more natural, safe and accessible options. But the reasons underlying this are worth noting. Like all areas of retail, women’s health is being disrupted. Many legacy players are seeing flat to negative growth while disruptive leaders are gaining traction. As a result, women are gravitating away from their mothers’ brands toward dynamic brands that resonate with them and their lifestyle. The younger consumer has been breaking taboos over the past five to seven years as we witnessed
women in the United States are going through menopause at any given time.
disruption in the pregnancy/fertility space, period care and now mental wellness. The 40-plus consumer is embracing this mindset too and is opening up the conversation about their own health and what they need as they enter perimenopause/menopause. At the same time, many of these women feel their needs are often overlooked, as inclusion and visibility are critical to them at this point in their lives.
Better for the Planet Within the period and bladder care market, macro trends continue toward healthy-for-us, better-for-theplanet products. According to Clare Morgan, CEO of the Organic Initiative, based in Torrance, Calif., devastating climate events are contributing to this growing awareness and urgency to make changes in the way women live and the products they buy. At the same time, Morgan said greenwashing
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HEALTH: WOMEN’S HEALTH
remains an issue in the period and bladder care market with some products being made from plastic and toxic chemicals. She noted that many of those “made with organic cotton” are typically only 8% organic cotton unless certified organic. “Consumers are savvy and know how to verify the quality and certifications on a product,” Morgan said. “Together, this forms the basis for consumers’ trust.” Going forward, Morgan said she expects there will be more diverse product choices available, such as an increasing number of reusables (menstrual cups and absorbency options) and more add-on ancillary products like prebiotics and probiotics. She also said she anticipates an increase in the number of pain relief options and interest in organic options to accelerate. As for the bladder care (continence) product market, Morgan said it is continuing its upward trend as the taboo around bladder leakage fades and it’s discussed more freely, especially among younger consumers who are demanding more sustainable and healthier options. The company recently introduced its innovative incontinence range Oi Adult Care to the U.S. market.
Wile Herbal Supplement Capsules
SRP: $39.99 In June, Wile launched a line of four daily herbal supplement capsules at Walgreens. The clinically backed supplements are made with unique herbal and plant formulas, created in partnership with naturopathic doctors and research scientists. The product lineup includes: 40+ Perimenopause Support for overall hormonal and stress support; 40+ Period Support for uncomfortably changing periods and PMS; Hot Flash to help manage and reduce night sweats; and Women’s Stress for mood swings and stress resilience in midlife.
“The 40-plus customer is the healthiest, wealthiest and most active generation. She has money to spend and she really cares about her health.”
Nature’s Truth Collagen Gummies
SRP: $13.99 These naturally flavored strawberry gummies are a fun and tasty way for women to add this important protein to their daily beauty regimen. Convenient as they are delicious, Nature’s Truth Collagen Gummies provide 120 mg of hydrolyzed collagen per serving.
— Sally Mueller, co-founder and CEO, Womaness
Menopositivity More than 50 million women in the United States are going through menopause at any given time, and the average woman in this stage of life experiences multiple symptoms, such as hot flashes, mood changes, weight gain, sleep issues, irregular periods and vaginal dryness. When you consider that women can spend more than 30% of their life in menopause, it’s no wonder that they want more education around this topic so they’re better prepared on what to expect. They are also looking for products they can trust, whether that is doctor-tested ingredients that are backed with clinical studies or products that can help treat their various symptoms. “The 40-plus customer is the healthiest, wealthiest and most active generation. She has money to spend and she really cares about her health,” said Sally Mueller, co-founder and CEO of Womaness, based in Minneapolis. “When we founded Womaness, we decided it was time to finally help prepare her for this important transition and treat her symptoms once she starts to experience perimenopause in an informative and accessible way.”
Nature’s Truth D3 + B-12 Gummies
SRP: $14.99 This trusted pair of essential vitamins has never been more delicious than in Nature’s Truth’s great-tasting D3 + B12 Gummies. Made with natural flavors only, these strawberry gummies are a vegetarianfriendly way to obtain a high-potency source of the revitalizing duo vitamin D3, known as the sunshine vitamin, and vitamin B-12.
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holistically. The Portland, Ore.-based company was founded and formulated by women. Using naturopathic and traditional Chinese medicine, Wile’s supplement capsules, tinctures and functional drinks are clinically backed to help grown women aged 40ish to 60ish feel their best. The products are 100% natural, vegan and gluten free. Focused on hormonal health and stress, Wile is the first brand to take a holistic approach to perimenopause. Wile’s supplements can be mixed and matched for overall hormonal health and its many unpredictable symptoms. That includes stress, which impacts aging, health and perimenopause. As a brand focused on women’s health, the company’s omnichannel approach includes its recent partnership with Walgreens. “The awareness of perimenopause and menopause currently going on in our culture is unprecedented,” said Corey Scholibo, co-founder and COO of Womaness. Scholibo noted that it used to be rare to see any articles published on the topic, but now the frequency is almost daily and outlets like Vogue are calling it the trend du jour. All of this, he said, continues to raise demand for products and services that address those symptoms, but also the general wellness needs of women over 40. “Women are living 30 years longer on average, but her needs from ages 40 to 60 are largely ignored by brands and retailers,” Scholibo said. “I will say retailers like Walgreens have identified this woman as a core customer and are actively trying to grow the category to increase her support.”
Womaness Coco Bliss External Vaginal (and All-Over) Moisturizer
SRP: $18.99 for 4-oz. Designed to ease vaginal dryness often experienced in menopause, this multitasker can be used as a prep for intimacy and to hydrate skin pretty much anywhere. Soothing on skin with a nonsticky, smooth texture, it has a natural coconut scent. There is absolutely no estrogen, phytoestrogen or added hormones, and it is free from animal-derived ingredients, parabens, phthalates, sulfates, artificial colors, formaldehyde and mineral oils. It’s also vegan, dermatologist- and allergytested, and made without soy or gluten.
Womaness offers a collection of modern, innovative menopause products developed for women, by women, that offer solutions from head to toe — and everything in between. “With community, education and inspiration, Womaness sparks the power of menopositivity,” Mueller said. As more women ask for naturally based solutions, companies have been quick to respond. Wile, a plant-powered naturopathic wellness brand for perimenopause and midlife, is shifting hormonal stigmas while looking at women and formulations
“Female consumers are continuing to look for products that fit their changing needs.” — Kimberly Vigliante, senior vice president of sales and marketing, Piping Rock
Everyday Supplements As more consumers realize the power of taking care of their well-being from the inside out, more are turning to nutritional supplements to improve their health, especially those that offer alternative delivery methods. Kimberly Vigliante, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Piping Rock, said when looking at nutritional sales during the first quarter of this year there are some clear standouts. She said sales data shows collagen is the primary contributor to the dollar growth of women’s supplements, growing nearly 24% in the last 13 weeks, which is more than four times the women’s supplement growth rate. The Bohemia, N.Y.-based company offers a wide range of supplements under the Nature’s Truth brand of products. “Vitamin D continues to be a wellness staple among women, with Nature’s Truth driving vitamin D trends and growing at more than 1.5 times total vitamin D,” Vigliante said. She noted that along with vitamin B-12, many women are seeking out these three supplements as a proactive way to focus on their core essential needs. Keeping a close eye on the latest trends, news and scientific studies has helped put Piping Rock in the position of offering women the wellness products in the forms they want. It also enables the company to introduce products to market at a fast rate. “Decades of industry know-how allows us to develop and introduce innovative products at the right time, with an unparalleled speed to market,” Vigliante said. “Utilizing our own state-ofthe-art facilities and manufacturing equipment, we build best-in-class formulas that feature trending ingredients and unique delivery forms to satisfy the needs of today’s consumers.” The company also has created operational efficiencies throughout the manufacturing process, including in-house packaging, label design and printing. “Female consumers are continuing to look for products that fit their changing needs,” Vigliante said. “Gummy vitamins continue to drive interest because of their ease of use and flavor satisfaction, as do powders due to their versatility and ease of mixing into shakes and coffee.” dsn
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Your Retailer Will See You Now Retailers are now expanding services for people suffering from diabetes By Sandra Levy
A number of major retailers are stepping up to the plate to support diabetes prevention and care with expanded services and programs. The list of services includes medication therapy management, point-of-care testing and screenings, personalized interventions, product demonstrations, on-on-one coaching, video webinars and education. Retail expansion into diabetes care comes at a time when it is sorely needed. According to the American Diabetes Association, in 2019, 37.3 million Americans, or 11.3% of the population, had diabetes. Every year, 1.4 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes. In 2019, 96 million Americans aged 18 years old and older had prediabetes. While numbers for the diabetes category are hard to come by, Chicago-based research company IRI pegged annual sales of the home health care/kits category to be around $4 billion, glucose testing
The home health care/ kits category is estimated at
in U.S. multi-outlets for the 52 weeks ending May 15, 2022. Source: IRI
kits to be over $347 million and lancet/devices to be almost $39 million in U.S. multi-outlets for the 52 weeks ending May 15, 2022.
Key Players One of the experienced players in diabetes care is Walmart. The retailer serves 14% of its customers who have diabetes via its pharmacies, Walmart Health centers and telehealth programs. Following the debut of ReliOn insulin in 2000, last year Walmart introduced ReliOn NovoLog, the first and only private analog insulin. The ReliOn brand also includes affordable blood glucose monitors, lancets and other diabetes management essentials. “Insulin affordability is a major issue, and we know many people with diabetes struggle to manage their disease because of its financial burden,” said David Carmouche, senior vice president of omnichannel care at Walmart Health & Wellness. “That’s why
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Walmart offers a suite of low-cost diabetes products that provide customers with choices when it comes to their diabetes management.” Yet another innovation, The Walmart Health Virtual Care Diabetes Program, was developed in collaboration with the American Diabetes Association. It is available as a standalone or as part of a comprehensive medical and behavioral telehealth program for employers to offer employees and their families, and it allows members access to personalized diabetes management in their homes.
“We use smart analytics to power personalized interventions that help improve adherence and patient outcomes by identifying patients who are most in need, then triggering interventions through the most appropriate channels, which enables personalized conversations.” — Stacey Emmons, director of pharmacy and retail operations, Walgreens
“We are working to help customers better manage their diabetes through convenient, affordable products, including access to fresh foods and workout clothes, in addition to our primary care offerings at Walmart Health centers,” Carmouche said. “We operate more than 4,600 pharmacies nationwide, many of which serve the heart of rural America. Our pharmacists can provide education on monitoring glucose levels, help patients with medication management and offer counsel on diet and exercise.” Walgreens also is on the cutting edge when it comes to providing diabetes care. “We start with our pharmacists receiving enhanced diabetes management training and completing regular continuing education to keep up to date with current guidelines,” said Stacey Emmons, director of pharmacy and retail operations at Walgreens. “These tools help our pharmacists empower individuals living with diabetes with the information they need to manage their health. We
Who’s Helping the Helpers? THESE COMPANIES ARE COMING TO THE AID OF RETAILERS THAT PROVIDE DIABETES PREVENTION AND CARE
Embecta, based in Parsippany, N.J., has a broad portfolio of injection devices complemented by education, training and support resources available across multiple channels and digital platforms. Formerly part of BD, embecta is focused on diabetes care, building on nearly 100 years of experience and a global manufacturing and distribution network, delivering about 7.6 billion units of diabetes injection devices to more than 30 million people in more than 100 countries. Intuity Medical, in Fremont, Calif., is a commercial-stage medical technology and digital health company focused on developing comprehensive solutions to improve the health and quality of life for people with diabetes. Intuity Medical’s POGO Automatic Blood Glucose Monitoring System is the only FDAcleared automatic blood glucose monitoring system that lances and collects blood in just one step through its 10-test cartridge technology, ending the need to individually load lancets and test strips as required by other blood glucose meters. POGO Automatic delivers a simplified and discreet blood glucose testing experience that is less disruptive to the user’s everyday life. i-SENS USA, located in Torrance, Calif., is a subsidiary of i-SENS, a South Korean manufacturer of blood glucose monitoring systems and 2.1-plus billion diabetes test strips per year. In 2022, i-SENS launched the CareSens S Fit blood glucose monitor system, which is integrated with reliable NeuralSync sensing technology to deliver more accurate glucose readings. It has been serving customers in New Zealand and South Korea for more than a decade. Since 2012, the company has been the exclusive supplier of glucometers in New Zealand. LifeScan, in Malvern, Pa., is a global leader in blood glucose monitoring and digital health technology. More than 20 million people and their caregivers around the world count on LifeScan’s
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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OneTouch brand of glucose meters, test strips and lancing devices to manage their diabetes. Used together, the OneTouch Verio Reflect or the OneTouch Verio Flex meter and the OneTouch Reveal app help manage a patient’s blood sugar. The newest OneTouch Solutions digital health subscription program integrates the product with premium wellness tools from Noom, Fitbit, Cecelia Health, Welldoc and more. Medtronic, based in Northridge, Calif., cares about improving the lives of those within the diabetes community. “We’re passionate about our products that help people achieve their health goals, proud of our around-the-clock support and service and driven to innovate new diabetes solutions,” the company states. Owen Mumford, in Marietta, Ga., is an industry leader in medical device design and manufacturing. The company’s portfolio includes Unifine pen needles, Unilet lancets, Autolet lancing devices and Unistik safety lancets. Owen Mumford recently introduced a home-use pen needle, Unifine Ultra, which has innovative design features that help to enhance the injection experience and encourage patient compliance. Simply Good Foods, a Denver-based company, makes the Atkins brand, rooted in the nutritional principles of reduced sugar and carbohydrates, with optimal protein and good fats. Atkins offers nutritional bars; ready-to-drink shakes that contain calcium, vitamins and minerals; confectionary treats and snacks, including Atkins’ Iced Chai protein shake, which contains tea, vitamins, minerals, 15 grams of protein, 5 grams of fiber and 1 gram of sugar per serving; and Atkins’ Nacho Cheese Protein Chips. UltiMed, in Excelsior, Minn., has launched an exclusive product that combines 100 pen needles or insulin syringes with a sharps waste container and prepaid mailback materials for proper disposal of sharps at a medical waste treatment facility. It’s available in all standard sizes for the same co-pay as pen needles or syringes alone. The 3-in-1 kit, which is compliant with California Senate Bill 212, can be purchased from AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health or McKesson.
take a holistic approach with patients to educate and support nutrition, exercise and ensure they get regular checkups and screenings, such as kidney screenings, diabetes eye exams and foot exams.” Building strong relationships with patients in their communities to support medication adherence is a key focus of Walgreens’ pharmacy team. “We use smart analytics to power personalized interventions that help improve adherence and patient outcomes by identifying patients who are most in need, then triggering interventions through the most appropriate channels, which enables personalized conversations,” Emmons said. Additionally, Walgreens provides a 24/7 Pharmacy Chat option through its mobile app and website, giving patients easy access to personalized care and advice from Walgreens pharmacists. Stop & Shop is another formidable player in providing diabetes care. In the spring of 2020, the retailer began offering free monthly virtual diabetes and prediabetes webinars year-round. The webinar content, and patient educational takeaways, are created by a team of clinical pharmacists and registered dietitians. During American Diabetes Month in November, a more in-depth weekly series is offered. Participants receive a 40-plus page resource document that includes educational handouts along with dietitian-approved product choices and recipes, and an appointment for a complimentary medication review with a pharmacist and a consultation with a dietitian. “As retail dietitians, we play a vital role in ensuring that our customers are equipped with the knowledge that they need to succeed in managing those conditions since it is so closely tied to food and medication management,” said Emily Hayes, a dietitian on the nutrition team. “Since we are a retailer with two strong heath expert teams, we can best service our customers by teaming up to provide this valuable education for patients.” Stop & Shop’s pharmacists also provide demonstrations of how to use blood glucometers and on specialty pen injection techniques. Brittany Orlando, a clinical pharmacist on the team, explained that many patients are prescribed injectable diabetes products, which often requires dialing up a dose on the device. “There are certain techniques patients should follow, such as attaching a new needle to the hub of that injection device with each use, making sure the area is cleansed appropriately and rotating injection sites to reduce the risk of injection site reactions or potential
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infection,” she said. “Our pharmacists can walk you through step by step how to use them.” Stop & Shop pharmacists also help patients understand how to use glucometers that sync to a smartphone, enabling patients to upload data to their medical records, and they are proactive in flagging a new prescription so that they can ask patients if they have questions. “Pharmacy takes the lead on why it’s important to manage blood sugar levels, to improve health outcomes and on how to achieve success with any medications the patient may be prescribed,” Orlando said. Hy-Vee also is taking a lead in providing diabetes care from its pharmacists and 50 dietitians across its eight-state region. Over a decade ago, the retailer began to offer programs that have evolved throughout the years. Programs take place in-store in some locations and are virtual in others. “Hy-Vee pharmacists work collaboratively with our dietitians to provide knowledge, disease state counseling and MTM,” said Angie Nelson, senior vice president of pharmacy at Hy-Vee. “Our pharmacists refer diabetes patients to the Hy-Vee dietitian team if they are requesting or needing additional support to help with diet and food selection.” Hy-Vee pharmacists also counsel and show newly diagnosed diabetes patients how to monitor their blood glucose, and refer them to the dietitian team for additional support. A1C screenings also are part of Hy-Vee’s focus on diabetes. “In partnership with several of our supplier partners, we administered 1,000 free A1C screenings to customers across dozens of our stores in April, with a record number of customer signups,” said Elisa Sloss, vice president of HealthMarkets and dietitians at Hy-Vee. “Following the screening, our dietitians shared tips on how individuals could better manage their blood sugar.” The Hy-Vee dietitian-led virtual diabetes store tours, which are live and on-demand, help customers navigate the grocery aisles and learn the basics of following a diabetic-friendly meal plan. They also offer product recommendations and tips on how to add more nutrition
In the spring of 2020, Stop & Shop began offering free monthly virtual diabetes and prediabetes webinars year-round.
37.3 million Americans, or
of the population, had diabetes. Source: American Diabetes Association
into individuals’ lifestyles. The tours integrate with the Hy-Vee Aisles Online grocery ordering service via a shoppable link that makes it easy for customers to quickly shop products online as they’re touring the store and view product nutritional information. “The virtual tours also are available in Spanish, allowing us to broaden our customer reach,” Sloss said. Additionally, each month, Hy-Vee dietitians lead virtual Freezer Meal Prep Workshops to help customers learn how to save time on meals using nutritious ingredients. In April, Hy-Vee’s dietitians focused on carb-conscious recipes to help those with diabetes learn how to better manage their blood sugar levels. Customers who enroll in the workshops receive a step-bystep guide, recipes, a shopping list and a Hy-Vee Aisles Online shoppable link to make the experience of prepping, shopping and cooking convenient. What’s more, Hy-Vee’s team of registered dietitians are available to consult one-on-one virtually or in person with customers to discuss their lifestyles and conditions,
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
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Meet the w blood glucose monitor that lances and collects blood automatically.
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and develop a meal plan tailored to their personal health goals. Additionally, Hy-Vee recently launched WholeLotta Good, a national ship-to-home website. “WholeLotta Good offers an array of dietitian-approved food and supplements, including products for individuals with diabetes. The website also features a blog offering expert advice and healthy recipes,” Sloss said.
“When detected and treated early, people at risk for diabetes or prediabetic patients can reduce the severity of the disease long-term or even prevent it entirely.” — Tim Kaylor, clinical pharmacy specialist, Giant
Hy-Vee also provides a line of sugar-free OTC items and a team of pharmacy technicians who can advise patients. The Giant Company, based in Carlisle, Pa., also is a leader in helping patients tackle diabetes. At Giant and Martin’s, all pharmacies have a specially trained diabetic care pharmacist who helps patients with questions on medications and diabetes management. Tim Kaylor, clinical pharmacy specialist at Giant, said that by offering information from experts focusing on both medical and nutritional factors, “we can address diabetes from all angles. We also can prevent the severity of the disease if customers are given the tools for early detection and management of their weight, health and diet. Our pharmacists are involved in all of the programs we offer, from teaching the diabetes classes to being a great in-store resource. They also are available to support our customers in managing their diabetes and answering their questions about label reading, portion sizes or medication.” In addition, the pharmacy section of the retailers’ website and Rx app offer prescription management to customers. The Rx app also includes a health library section with high-level information on various topics, including diabetes. Giant also partners with local community
organizations and employers to screen individuals for diabetes. “When detected and treated early, people at risk for diabetes or prediabetic patients can reduce the severity of the disease long-term or even prevent it entirely,” Kaylor said. Additionally, all of Giant’s stores with pharmacies have Higi Health Stations, enabling customers to engage with the “Know Your Risk for Diabetes” program. “Based on their responses, their risk score will be calculated as high risk or low risk and shared with them on the station, and they receive a follow-up email with recommended next steps,” he said. Giant’s dietitian team also offers guidance for those struggling with diabetes or prediabetes. “Customers can expect advice on better-for-you options to add to their shopping carts and time- and money-saving tips to bring balance to their lives while making the best decisions for them and their families,” Kaylor said. As more retailers seek to tackle social determinants of health, offering diabetes care is a win-win for retailers and patients. Noting that 4,000 of Walmart’s stores are located in HRSA-designated medically underserved areas, Carmouche said: “Through our pharmacists, Walmart Health centers and telehealth services, we are in a unique position to reach more people with care and resources that they need. By using all of our existing assets together — from fresh food to pharmacies to telehealth to clinics — we are able to care for our customers when and where they need care, in the way that works best for them.” In Chicago, where there is a large population of patients with diabetes, local customers and associates have access to HabitNu, a diabetes management program developed by the CDC. “Our locations also emphasize programs that address the social determinants of health, including behavioral health needs,” Carmouche said. “In underserved communities that we serve, we’ve observed a higher rate of diabetes and lower health outcomes. Our health equity diabetes program helps patients connect with our pharmacists to get information surrounding clinical guidelines, recommended lifestyle changes and general tips to manage their diabetes,” Walgreens’ Emmons said. “We’ve implemented this pilot program in Chicago-area stores, which takes a holistic approach to helping patients. Through comprehensive, personalized consultations, our pharmacists can uncover gaps in diabetes care and barriers to adherence, and offer tailored solutions leading to improved health outcomes.” To ensure guidelines are met to support prevention of common complications in diabetes, Walgreens also is piloting enhanced screening services, including HbA1C and blood pressure screenings. The retailer works with select payer partners to pilot comprehensive disease-state management interventions, offering personalized consultations to select patients to educate and motivate them, “to close gaps in care and resolve barriers to adherence,” Emmons said. In addition, Walgreens offers a Prescriptions Savings Club that lowers prices on hundreds of prescription medications, including diabetes medications. “By providing various programs and access to our pharmacists and dietitians, we are there to help these patients navigate their diagnosis,” Nelson said, pointing out that in many communities, Hy-Vee is the most accessible place for individuals to receive health care. Perhaps Kaylor summed up best what retailers are hoping to accomplish in the diabetes space: “We are meeting our patients directly where they are in order to achieve the CDC’s goal of creating environments that promote attaining the full potential for health and well-being for all.” dsn
July 2022 DRUGSTORENEWS.COM
6/27/22 10:16 PM
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A New Look at Gen Z Consumers and Employees From health preferences to career intentions, Gen Z’s evolving perspectives provide new opportunities for retailers By David Orgel
A lot can evolve over four years in the life of a young generation. When I first wrote a DSN column about Gen Z consumers back in 2018, I titled the piece, “Gen Z Will Put Retail Disruption on Steroids.” Here’s what I wrote: “Millennials were trailblazers for introducing a range of new shopping behaviors. With Gen Z, so many of these behaviors will be on steroids. Gen Z speeds everything up.” While I believe this point is still true, it’s become clearer that Gen Z isn’t just accelerating the perspectives and behaviors of millennials, but also taking some new and surprising directions as well. Members of this group are roughly between the ages of 10 and 25 years old, with the oldest segment already in the workforce for a few years. Here’s a curated look at some of the latest research and thought leadership on this generation that provides important insights for food and drug retailers.
A Stressed Out Generation Gen Z is the most stressed out generation, based on the 2022 Food and Health Survey from the International Food Information Council, or IFIC. The research found that some 33% of Gen Z reports high stress levels, compared to 29% of millennials, 25% of Gen Xers and 10% of boomers. This is the only generation for which emotional/ mental health surfaces in the top three health benefits sought from foods, beverages or nutrients. These data points tell me that retailers need to prioritize solutions and communications related to stress reduction and mental health because those will connect with this younger cohort.
Surprising Views on Sustainability It’s not shocking that members of Gen Z are focused on environmental sustainability. The IFIC research found that 73% of this group believes their generation is more concerned about the environmental impact of food choices than other generations.
David Orgel is an award-winning business journalist, industry expert and speaker. He is the principal of David Orgel Consulting.
“It’s become clearer that Gen Z isn’t just accelerating the perspectives and behaviors of millennials, but also taking some new and surprising directions as well.”
However, there’s an interesting twist. Members of Gen Z are less inclined than millennials to believe their personal food choices have at least a moderate impact on the environment (50% Gen Z versus 67% millennials), the IFIC research found. Retailers should consider this twist as they develop Gen Z communications strategies related to sustainability. Stores might want to provide more education about the specific environmental impacts of products and packaging. Or, conversely, some retailers may choose to avoid the subject of impacts altogether, instead messaging more generally about sustainability.
Revealing Perspectives on Employment While retailers and other employers struggle with retaining younger employees, an interesting piece of new research finds that “loyalty is in” for college graduates from the pandemic period. “An overwhelming majority (91%) of recent grads and college seniors say they care how long they stay with an employer,” according to research from the talent-focused technology company ICIMS. “Two in three (68%) see themselves staying with an employer and/or having a longterm career path.” Retailers need to understand these Gen Z motivations because this will help drive creation of strategies to help ensure employees stay and grow with organizations.
The Story Will Evolve Further Even as we learn more about Gen Z, it’s clear the story will continue to evolve. We’ve seen this narrative before. Millennials adapted their perspectives and behaviors as they aged and entered new life stages. The same will be true of Gen Z. Retailers would do well to stay on top of the needs of Gen Z, from shopping preferences to career imperatives. While it’s a cliché to say it, this generation represents the future — and increasingly the present — of retail. dsn
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