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Gellad questions CVS Health move to limit access to opioid painkillers

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WALL STREET JOURNAL - One of the largest managers of pharmaceutical benefits in the U.S. says it will start limiting the duration and dose of some prescriptions for opioid painkillers, in an effort to combat widespread addiction. The restrictions, based on CDC recommendations published last year, could cause some debate. WALID GELLAD, physician and HPM assistant professor, said the restrictions for chronic pain could cause cumbersome paperwork an... 

Carolinas HealthCare System names DeFurio as new CFO

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CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL - After a natioinwide search, NC-based Carolinas HealthCare System has tapped alumnus ANTHONY DEFURIO (HADM ’89) to serve as executive vice president and CFO, effective October 2017. Carolinas recently announced it would merge with Chapel Hill-based UNC Health Care, forming one of the nation’s largest hospital networks. Leading up to this new position, DeFurio was senior vice president and CFO at University of Colorado ... 

Gellad says the naloxone pricing system is out of control (video)

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WTAE ACTION NEWS - As the opioid crisis sweeping the country, demand for naloxone has soared—and so has the price. HPM’s WALID GELLAD, who studies drug pricing, says the system is completely out of control. Naloxone cost increases have sky-rocketed, a huge concern for emergency service providers and community organizations. 

Gellad sceptical that drug company outcomes-based pricing can lower costs

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Drug policy researcher WALID GELLAD says the outcomes-based contracts are being viewed as the solution to the drug-price problem, and they’re not going to be, at least not in the short term. The deals don’t stop drug companies from charging high starting prices for new drugs or from steadily raising prices for older drugs. Any rebates or discounts in outcomes-based contracts are off an already inflated number. He favors other ways to curb drug co... 

Bulger named as a 2017 40-Under40 standout

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PITTSBURGH MAGAZINE - Alumna NATALIE BULGER (HPM ’12) has been named one of Pump and Pittsburgh Magazine’s 2017 40-Under-40 remarkable people! We’re so proud of her work at the Children's Institute of Pittsburgh, where she has risen quickly to the position of director of compliance, risk, and regulatory requirements. 

Accreditation president visits HPM to learn more about MHA program

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Anthony Stanowski, president and CEO of the Commission of Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME), visited the Department of Health Policy and Management on Wednesday, August 30. His main goals of the visit were to learn more about our MHA program and to stress the importance of CAHME accreditation in advancing the quality of health care management education. 

Gellad on the cancer drug pricing firestorm

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AXIOS - Doctor and health policy professor WALID GELLAD said the real question is why a potential breakthrough drug that has some question marks about effectiveness should cost more than proven life-saving measures like bone marrow or kidney transplants. “This is an amazing therapy, but there has to be a limit at which point companies can no longer charge desperate patients, or taxpayers, enormous sums.” 

Shapiro interviewed about growing better, not bigger

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BECKER’S HOSPITAL REVIEW - Pitt Public Health alumnus LOU SHAPIRO (HPM ’84), CEO of the New York based Hospital for Special Surgery, talks about how he plans to stay competitive in an increasingly consolidated healthcare landscape and what it means to grow better instead of bigger. 

Hernandez says evolocumab not cost-effective at current price

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TCTMD - Two new analyses call into question the cost-effectiveness of adding the PCSK9 inhibitor evolocumab to statin therapy in patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Pitt Public Health alumna INMACULADA HERNANDEZ (HPM ’16) noted that the conclusions of the two papers are the same: the drug’s cost “is way above what we usually considered cost-effective in this country.” 

Donohue's research says hospitals could do more for survivors of opioid overdoses

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NPR - Using claims data from Medicaid patients in Pennsylvania from 2008 to 2013, HPM’s JULIE DONOHUE looked at prescription opioid use and medication-assisted treatment rates before and after overdoses. The study's senior author found that “This is a time when people are vulnerable, potentially frightened by this event that’s just occurred and amenable to advice, referral, and treatment recommendations. It’s safe to characterize it as a missed o... 

HPM grad Rick Anderson guides St. Luke's hospitals through decades of change

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THE MORNING CALL -- After over 30 years at the helm of St. Luke's University Health Network, RICHARD A. ANDERSON (HPM '71) is among a handful of the longest-serving top health care executives nationally. With Anderson at the helm, St. Luke's has grown from a single hospital with an annual budget of $73 million to a diversified health care organization with more than $1 billion in revenues and 9,000 employees, making it the second-biggest employer... 

Donohue on the causes of explosive growth in opioid prescription sales

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HUFF POST - What caused the explosive growth in opioid sales? The FDA and TV advertising. In 1997, the FDA rules governing pharmaceutical advertising changed, allowing TV ads to name both the drug and what was for, while only naming the most significant potential side effects. After that, the number of TV ads exploded. A 2009 NPR story stated “there’s an average of 80 drug ads every hour of every day on American television. And those ads clearly ... 

Broom joins HPM leadership

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UNIVERSITY TIMES - The Department of Health Policy and Management has named a new vice chair of education and director of the Master of Health Administration (MHA) and MHA/MBA joint degree programs. KEVIN BROOM comes to Pitt from Saint Louis University, where he served as an assistant professor of health management and policy. Broom succeeds WESLEY ROHRER, who returned to the HPM faculty on June 30. 

CPHP’s Van Nostrand launches ELI, new award-winning legal tool for emergency volunteers

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In May 2017, ELIZABETH VAN NOSTRAND and her team from the Center for Public Health Practice were honored with the Medical Reserve Corps Program National Partner Recognition Award for the development of ELI, the Emergency Law Inventory tool — a repository of statutes and regulations that impact volunteers participating in emergency response activities on the topics of liability, license reciprocity, scope of practice, and workers’ benefits. 

HPM's Gellad asked about Ohio drug price measure

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BLOOMBERG - If a pharmaceutical company wants to gain access to the VA’s market, it has an incentive to offer the VA a lower price on its drugs, said HPM’s WALID GELLAD. But would drug companies simply raise their prices to the VA? 

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