Tag Archives: Avastin

The Partnership For Safe Medicines Interchange 2014

PSM Interchange 2014The 2014 Partnership for Safe Medicines (PSM) Interchange event was held on September 18 in Washington DC.  This was the fifth year of the event and every year it gets better.  That’s why RxTrace has been a media sponsor of the event for the last four years.  This year, I found every speaker to be compelling.  Next year I am elevating this event to my “highly recommended” short list.

Attendance at the event has grown each year and this time they reached the capacity of the venue and were forced to cut off registrations some time before the day of the event.  A number of RxTrace readers were present at the this year’s event but more ought to attend going forward.

The PSM interchange is a different kind of event.  It’s not a “how to” event.  Over the years, the speaker lineup has included State and Federal pharma regulators, criminal justice professionals (investigators and prosecutors), academics, politicians, pharmaceutical industry associations, medical professionals and occasionally, victims of counterfeit drugs.  The audience includes all of the above, plus Continue reading The Partnership For Safe Medicines Interchange 2014

How the DQSA Will–And Won’t–Protect The Supply Chain, Part 1

SuperheroThe supply chain provisions contained within the Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA)—themselves known as the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA)—mark a significant achievement by Congress and the industry to protect the U.S. pharmaceutical supply chain from criminals.  It is the first completed attempt since 1987 when the Prescription Drug Marketing Act (PDMA) was enacted by Congress and signed by President Ronald Reagan.  In comparison, the provisions of the DSCSA are much more detailed and extensive than the PDMA and they read as if they were heavily influenced by people who solidly understand the scale and complexity of the legitimate supply chain.  Which, they were, based on the contribution of the Pharmaceutical Distribution Security Alliance (PDSA)—made up of key stakeholders in the supply chain—in their development.  That should ensure that the industry will be able to adopt the technology and process modifications necessary to meet the new law on time.

But will all this also lead to true protection of the supply chain from criminal activities?  Will the DSCSA portion of the DQSA end up presenting new and insurmountable barriers against criminals who game the supply chain to their advantage and thereby putting patients at risk?  These are the true measures of the success of this type of legislation.  How can we know if the DSCSA will have these positive affects? Continue reading How the DQSA Will–And Won’t–Protect The Supply Chain, Part 1

Detecting Drug Diversion With Data Analytics–An RxTrace Interview With Analytics Expert Kosta Tzavaras

phiSystems_Logo2This week I have a special treat to share with RxTrace readers.  It is an interview I recently conducted with Kosta Tzavaras, author, publisher, leading data management expert in the pharmaceutical industry and Solutions Manager with Phi Systems in Thousand Oaks, California.  Kosta is a consultant to pharma and biotech manufacturers specializing in data analytics using supply chain and reimbursement data to help detect various kinds of drug diversion.

The original interview was conducted last summer and we updated it last week to reflect the recent passage of the Federal Drug Quality and Security Act.

DirkWelcome Kosta.  Please describe your business…what it is that you do at a high level? 

Kosta:  Phi Systems is focusing in a niche area within the brand protection business in pharmaceuticals dealing with provider type of diversion, that is where healthcare providers are involved.  The two particular areas I’m focusing on are physician office diversion—diversion that is enabled by the actions of certain physicians and their practices—and the second has to do with 340B diversion or PHS (Public Health Services) account diversion.  That is diversion enabled, again, by Continue reading Detecting Drug Diversion With Data Analytics–An RxTrace Interview With Analytics Expert Kosta Tzavaras

Well-Intended Report Calls For Global Track & Trace Of Pharmaceuticals

Studying the IOM reportI’ve been reading the Institute of Medicine (IOM) report called “Countering the Problem of Falsified and Substandard Drugs” that was published last week.  At 360 pages, it is quite literally a book, and you can buy it that way.  But they also allow you to download the “Pre-publication Copy:  Uncorrected Proofs” version in a 300 page PDF for free.  I’m not sure why they would post uncorrected proofs rather than the final document on their site but I assume the text is in its final edited form and only the formatting might be different between the book and the PDF.  I hope so anyway.

I have not yet read the whole thing so this isn’t intended to be a proper review (see the Regulatory Focus article about it).  The document offers Continue reading Well-Intended Report Calls For Global Track & Trace Of Pharmaceuticals

InBrief: Illegally Imported Drugs Found To Be Counterfeit…Again

Altuzan labeled for sale in Turkey
Altuzan labeled for sale in Turkey

Yesterday the FDA alerted healthcare providers that a cancer drug illegally imported and distributed to medical practices by a licensed pharmaceutical distributor going by the names “Medical Device King” and “Pharmalogical”, and Taranis Medical, is counterfeit.  The FDA alert can be found here.  Once again, the drug is labeled as Altuzan, a version of bevacizumab which contains the same active ingredient as Avastin.  Here is AP story about it.  Here is the WSJ article about it.

Avastin was the subject of a counterfeit importation crime about a year ago, (see “How Counterfeit Avastin Penetrated the U.S. Supply Chain“).

It is illegal to import drugs that are not approved by the FDA for sale and use in the U.S., and so even if the drug had not turned out to be a counterfeit version, this would have still been a crime.  It makes me wonder if the reason this case came to light was because the drug name on the package was clearly not approved here.  What if the counterfeit drug had been Continue reading InBrief: Illegally Imported Drugs Found To Be Counterfeit…Again

InBrief: Pharma Supply Chain Criminals Get Justice, Part 2

Ed Silverman has just raised my awareness in his Pharmalot blog for today that the Wall Street Journal is reporting that the first physician has pleaded guilty to purchasing illegal foreign drugs in the counterfeit Avastin series of crimes from earlier this year.  That’s swift justice and I love it.  Apparently there are more to come.  Hopefully it will serve to remind all physicians that they need to only buy from licensed and legitimate sources.  Their patient’s lives depend their knowledge and skills… but also on their pharmaceutical buying practices

Rather than repeat Ed and WSJ, just go read the articles yourself by clicking here:

Continue reading InBrief: Pharma Supply Chain Criminals Get Justice, Part 2