|Dave's Corner May 2012|
Well into the second quarter, we continue to progress in terms of programs, staffing, communication and help for the membership.
In April we welcomed our newest employee, Ronda Hubbard, who spent the month getting to know PFOA and its members, business partners and staff. Ronda will prove to be an excellent resource for our membership. She already has discovered opportunities to refine buying patterns and considerably affect members’ bottom line profitability. She has completed her first generic newsletter as well.
While attending the Anda Generic Summit this month, Ronda and I were able to uncover vendor programs that will improve opportunities for our members, learn more about the new regulatory vision and review expected direction of the health industry.
I joined Larry McIntosh, Todd Pendergraft and Don Schreiber at a PBM Development Board meeting in St. Louis. We reviewed options discovered in terms of business partners. The RFP for PBM development was refined and sent out.
Our Board and staff attended the AAP annual meeting in San Diego, along with a number of PFOA members. We held a Board meeting there, where a lot of ground was covered. We have an approved budget, covered legal issues for our legal group, got an update on the PBM development program and voted to hold our annual meeting independent of other meetings and shows. Our hospitality suite allowed members to mix and mingle socially at night with friends and other attendees.
While in California I managed to visit members of our group from San Ramon south. It was a great opportunity to speak face to face with our members and get their input. Whether a Medicine Shoppe or independent, the members stated that their biggest challenges are third party reimbursement reductions and audits.
We are making progress with ABC on a regulatory solution for some of our affected members, although it has been tough going. We have a commitment from ABC to participate and lead a webcast for a regulatory update on the 23rd of this month.
Last year PFOA focused on purchasing improvement through our new affiliate programs, a better contract with AmerisourceBergen to benefit our members and the addition of the Anda agreement focusing on improved service as well as balanced pricing opportunities. We put more rebates in members’ hands, improved cost of goods and delivered value. While we continue to deliver this we need to concentrate on some of the key areas concerning our members such as the PBM Development Program. RxAlly may eventually prove to be another piece of the solution and we are supporting this initiative. We need to identify the states that have put forward initiatives to make the audit function more equitable and standardized and get behind these areas. We are working with ABC and others to get our membership a playbook on the regulatory side given the new environment facing the community pharmacy industry. We will continue to address the areas keeping membership unified and growing in numbers.