August 2011

Volume 16, Number 8

In This Issue

Fall Means Flu Season

Visit the MPhA Career Center!

National Take Back Initiative

Upcoming Events


Sept. 10, 2011
Fall Clinical Symposium- Immunization Focus, Crowne Plaza, Plymouth

Nov. 11, 2011
MTM Symposium, Sheraton, Bloomington

Fall Means Flu Season

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced in mid July that it has approved the 2011-2012 influenza vaccine formulation for all six manufacturers licensed to produce and distribute influenza vaccine for the United States.

Vaccination remains the cornerstone of preventing influenza, a contagious respiratory disease caused by influenza viruses. The vaccine formulation protects against the three virus strains that surveillance indicates will be most common during the upcoming season and includes the same virus strains used for the 2010-2011 influenza season.

On average, between 5 percent and 20 percent of the U.S. population develops influenza each year, leading to more than 200,000 hospitalizations from related complications, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Influenza-related deaths vary yearly, ranging from a low of about 3,000 to a high of 49,000 people.

The brand names and manufacturers of the vaccines for the upcoming season are: Afluria, CSL Limited; Fluarix, GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals; FluLaval, ID Biomedical Corporation; FluMist, MedImmune Vaccines Inc.; Fluvirin, Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics Limited; and Fluzone, Fluzone High-Dose and Fluzone Intradermal, Sanofi Pasteur Inc. Fluzone Intradermal, approved on May 9, 2011, will be available for those ages 18 years through 64 years. This vaccine is delivered into the skin, rather than the muscle, using a very small needle.

Did you know the CDC estimates that almost 20% of the 2010-2011 influenza adult vaccine were administered by pharmacists? (source MMWR, June 16 2011)

Did you know that MPhA will offer APhA’s Immunization Certificate Program on September 25? Email if you are interested as space is limited.

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Visit the MPhA Career Center!

Are you looking for a job or a great employee? Did you know that MPhA has a Career Center?!

MPhA is working to update the website to serve you better. Take a quick minute to scan the site and check out the resource – the MPhA Career Center! The Career Center offers some great options for both job seekers and employers. Job seekers can search job postings, receive job alerts, and post their resume for potential employers to review. Employers have numerous options for posting positions, and can access hundreds of resumes from qualified pharmacists.

Check it out and post your resume today!

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National Take Back Initiative

October 29, 2011, 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. More than seven million Americans currently abuse prescription drugs, according to the 2009 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Each day, approximately 2,500 teens use prescription drugs to get high for the first time according to the Partnership for a Drug Free America. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including the home medicine cabinet.

In an effort to address this problem, DEA, in conjunction with state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the United States, conducted National Prescription Drug Take Back Days on Saturday, September 25, 2010 and again on April 25, 2011. The purpose of these National Take Back Days was to provide a venue for people to dispose of unwanted and unused prescription drugs. These efforts were a huge success in removing potentially dangerous prescription drugs, particularly controlled substances, from our nation’s medicine cabinets. Nearly 4,000 state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the nation participated in the events. All told, the American Public turned in more than 309 tons of pills during the combined events.

Four days after last fall’s Take-Back Day, Congress passed legislation amending the Controlled Substances Act to allow the DEA to develop a process for people to safely dispose of their prescription drugs. DEA immediately began developing this process after President Obama signed the Safe and Secure Drug Disposal Act of 2010 on October 12.

“The amount of prescription drugs turned in by the American public during the first two Take-Back events is simply staggering—309 tons—and represents a clear need for a convenient way to rid homes of unwanted or expired prescription drugs,” said DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “DEA is hard at work establishing a drug disposal process and will continue to offer take-back opportunities until the proper regulations are in place.”

DEA has scheduled another National Prescription Drug Take Back Day which will take place on Saturday, October 29, 2011, from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm. This is a great opportunity for those who missed the previous events or who have subsequently accumulated unwanted, unused prescription drugs, to safely dispose of them.

Minnesota sites will be identified in September.

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