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  • 2014: Year in review

    The Pharmaceutical Journal, 20/27 December 2014, Vol 293, No 7841/2

    Looking back at some of the biggest news stories from the past year.

  • The coevolution of our content and pharmacy

    The Pharmaceutical Journal, 20/27 December 2014, Vol 293, No 7841/2

    The changes to The Pharmaceutical Journal’s content mirror the changes occuring in pharmacy practice.

  • The European Medicines Agency still has a way to go towards clinical trial transparency

    The Pharmaceutical Journal, 20/27 December 2014, Vol 293, No 7841/2

    Loopholes in the new policy on publishing clinical study reports from the European Medicines Agency need to be closed.

  • We need a united effort to tackle antibiotic resistance

    The Pharmaceutical Journal, 20/27 December 2014, Vol 293, No 7841/2

    Pharmacists must work with local GPs to encourage prudent antimicrobial prescribing, says Jocelyn Parkes, director of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society in Wales.

  • Medicinal uses for slugs and snails and puppy dogs

    18 DEC 2014

    ‘What the apothecary ordered: questionable cures through the ages’, edited by Caroline Rance.

  • Urgent care e-learning

    18 DEC 2014

    The Centre for Pharmacy Postgraduate Education (CPPE) has launched a new e-learning programme for urgent care. The aim of this programme is to provide community pharmacy teams with the information and resources they need to understand their role in urgent care and to develop and provide quality services that improve patient experience and outcomes. The programme is available from the CPPE website.

  • Afinitor side effects

    18 DEC 2014

    Irregular menstruation is now listed as a common side effect, and amenorrhea is now listed as an uncommon side effect, on the summary of product characteristics for Afinitor (everolimus; Novartis).

  • NICE recommendations for ulcerative colitis

    18 DEC 2014

    The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended Remicade (infliximab; Merck Sharp & Dohme), Humira (adalimumab; Abbvie) and Simponi (golimumab; Merck Sharp & Dohme), within their marketing authorisations, as options for treating moderately to severely active ulcerative colitis in adults whose disease has responded inadequately to conventional therapy, including corticosteroids and mercaptopurine or azathioprine, or who cannot tolerate, or have medical ...

  • Orap in pregnancy

    18 DEC 2014

    The summary of product characteristics for Orap (pimozide; Janssen) now states that the drug should not be administered to women of childbearing potential, particularly during the first trimester of pregnancy, unless, in the opinion of the physician, the expected benefits of the drug to the patient outweigh the potential risk to the foetus.

  • Novartis Christmas opening hours

    18 DEC 2014

    The main switchboard at Novartis will be closed from 1pm on 24 December 2014 until the morning of 2 January 2015. Medical information will be available on 01276 698370 until 1pm on 24 December and from 10am until 4pm on 29–31 December. An emergency medical information service will be available outside these hours, also on 01276 698370. Customer care (for orders) will be available on 0845 7419442 between 8.30am and 2.30pm on 24 December, between 9am and ...

  • Prostap QT prolongation

    18 DEC 2014

    The summary of product characteristics for Prostap (leuprorelin; Takeda) has been updated to warn that androgen deprivation therapy may prolong the QT interval, therefore patients with a history of QT prolongation, those with risk factors for QT prolongation and patients receiving drugs that might prolong QT interval should be assessed before starting treatment.

  • Migard side effects

    18 DEC 2014

    Adverse reactions gathered after post-marekting experience have been added to the summary of product characteristics of Migard (frovatriptan; A Menarini). This includes hypersensitivity reactions, such as angioedema and anaphylaxis, and myocardial infarction and arteriospasm coronary, with frequency not known.

  • Calpol skin reactions

    18 DEC 2014

    The summary of product characteristics for Calpol (paracetamol oral suspension) infant suspension now states that patients should be informed about the signs of serious skin reactions, and use of the drug should be discontinued at the first appearance of skin rash or any other sign of hypersensitivity.

  • Drug driving laws

    18 DEC 2014

    The Department for Transport has asked pharmacies to help drivers understand the drug driving laws that come into effect in 2015. As part of a campaign to raise awareness of the new laws, from February 2015 pharmacy teams can display posters and provide leaflets to customers in the pharmacy. A ‘partner pack’ has been developed that helps explain the new rules. Pharmacy owners can...

  • Gardasil side effects

    18 DEC 2014

    The summary of product characteristics of Gardasil (human papillomavirus vaccine; Sanofi Pasteur) now includes acute disseminated encephalomyelitis as an adverse event with frequency not known.

  • NICE recommends ustekinumab for psoriatic arthritis

    18 DEC 2014

    The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has issued draft guidance for consultation recommending that use of ustekinumab (Stelara; Janseen-Cilag) on the NHS for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis in specific circumstances. NICE rejected the drug in May 2014 but, following the introduction of a patient access scheme, has proposed a reversal of this decision. ...

  • SMC December 2014 decisions

    18 DEC 2014

    In the latest round of decisions by the Scottish Medicines Consortium(SMC), a number of medicines have been accepted for use in NHS Scotland; obinutuzumab (Gazyvaro; Roche), pemetrexed (Alimta; Eli Lilly), pomalidomide (Imnovid; Celegene), umeclidinium (Incruse; GlaxoSmithKline), cholecalciferol 25,000 international units oral solution ...

  • Antiviral medicines for influenza

    18 DEC 2014

    GPs may now prescribe, at NHS expense, antiviral medicines for the prophylaxis and treatment of influenza. This is according to a letter from the Department of Health, which is available from the Central Alerting System on the Department of Health website.

  • New Faculty submission dates

    18 DEC 2014

    The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) Faculty is in its second year and, having listened to members’ and assessors’ opinions, the Faculty team would like to offer two assessment submission dates during 2015: Sunday 26 April 2015, midnight Sunday 29 November 2015, midnight...

  • Pregnant women at risk of mental health problems need more support, says NICE

    17 DEC 2014

    Women with a history of mental health problems should receive additional support before, during and after their pregnancy, according to new NICE guidance.

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