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Spectrum Pharmacy Products Blog

The Need for Office Use Compounding

Posted by Linda F. McElhiney,PharmD, RPh, FIACP, FACA, FASHP on Aug 4, 2017 11:12:21 AM

Physicians who perform certain procedures or minor surgical procedures are currently in a crisis and patients are having difficulty getting the treatment or care that they need. The ACA, commonly known as “Obama Care” cannot take the fall for this one. Since the Drug Quality and Security Act (DQSA) was implemented, the FDA has taken the stance that “for office use” compounding should not and cannot be done by 503A pharmacies. Even though several state boards of pharmacy allow pharmacies to compound for office use, pharmacy owners are choosing not to do it anymore because of the risk of being inspected by the FDA. The FDA is attempting to prevent sterile medications from being compounded by pharmacies that may not be following standards leading to the preparation and dispensing of contaminated preparations. The action by the FDA may be having the opposite effect than the Agency is intending to have.

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Low Vitamin D Levels and Their Link to Stroke Risk

Posted by Spectrum Pharmacy Products on Jul 21, 2017 8:48:09 AM

Studies show that adequate levels of vitamin D intake can protect the health of your muscles, brain and bones. But can vitamin D actually help prevent the causes of stroke? The American Heart Association published reports that vitamin D deficiency has been linked to obesity, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease—the top culprits often leading to stroke. So it would be an obvious conclusion that vitamin D supplements could help prevent these ailments leading to stroke.

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5 Tips For Staying Hydrated This Summer

Posted by Spectrum Pharmacy Products on Jun 22, 2017 7:11:01 AM

H2O is an essential nutrient as our bodies are made up of approximately 60 percent of water depending on your age and activity level. While staying hydrated is always important, it can become more challenging during those hot summer months. Your body loses water not only during active exercise, but also during inactivity through urine, perspiration, sweat and breath, according to the National Institutes of Health. Here are a few tips to help keep you hydrated and replace the water that is lost:

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A Lesson from the Food Preparation Industry

Posted by Linda F. McElhiney,PharmD, RPh, FIACP, FACA, FASHP on May 18, 2017 6:10:18 AM

All pharmacists, as rotation students, have a wide variety experiences and often see both good and bad habits. Pharmacy technicians in formal training programs also have similar experiences while doing their rotation activities. During these rotations, how many students have ever seen a licensed pharmacist or technician actually scrub up, don gloves, hair covers, and masks to prepare a non-sterile compound in a traditional retail pharmacy? Everyone is aware, unless they have been living in total isolation, of good hand hygiene and garbing practices for preparing sterile or hazardous preparations; however, there is very little focus about doing it for non-sterile compounding too. The USP<795> does state in the section of Responsibilities of the Compounder under General Principles of Compounding that “Personnel engaged in compounding maintain good hand hygiene and wear clean clothing appropriate to the type of compounding performed (e.g. hair bonnets, coats, gowns, gloves, facemasks, shoes, aprons, or other items) as needed for the protection of personnel from chemical exposures and for prevention of drug contamination”. Since non-sterile compounding often involves working with syrups and oral vehicles that could support bacterial or fungal growth, it makes sense that precautions should be taken in the non-sterile compounding environment too.

Let’s take a brief look at the food preparation industry. There have been reported news stories of restaurant employees not using gloves or washing their hands after using the restroom and causing an
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What Can Be Done to Protect the Staff Now from Hazardous Substances

Posted by Linda F. McElhiney,PharmD, RPh, FIACP, FACA, FASHP on Apr 24, 2017 7:53:25 AM

The USP<800> chapter doesn’t officially go into effect until July 2018. The physical requirements of the chapter is definitely going to have a financial impact on pharmacies, clinics, health-systems, and other healthcare facilities to build a proper negative-pressure room, sterile or non-sterile. Although this chapter is very burdensome for everyone, it was well-intentioned. USP<800> was published to provide practice and quality standards for handling hazardous substances “to promote patient safety, worker safety, and environmental protection.”

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Deactivation, Decontamination, Cleaning, and Disinfection

Posted by Linda F. McElhiney,PharmD, RPh, FIACP, FACA, FASHP on Apr 6, 2017 6:06:18 AM

Does your staff know the difference between deactivation, decontamination, cleaning, and disinfection and are they properly trained to do it? Lack of training and knowledge in section 15 of the USP<800> on Deactivating, Decontaminating, Cleaning, and Disinfecting (DDCD) can unnecessarily cause contamination with hazardous substances of the environment and equipment and exposure to staff members and possibly patients. Even though the USP<800> does not officially go into effect until July 2018, learning how to deactivate, decontaminate, clean, and disinfect is a simple procedure that can be implemented immediately without “breaking the bank” to protect the environment and equipment, as well as healthcare workers and patients.

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What do the nutrition facts on food labels actually mean?

Posted by Spectrum Pharmacy Products on Mar 15, 2017 7:19:57 AM

When it comes to the food you put in your body: information is power. Besides helping you make healthier choices, food labels make it easier for you to compare the nutrient content of various options. Some of the key information on nutrition labels include serving size, calories, fat content, cholesterol, protein, vitamin content, and more. The food label also contains the list of ingredients—starting with most prevalent and ending with least prevalent.

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Green Vegetables & Sports Endurance

Posted by Spectrum Pharmacy Products on Feb 21, 2017 1:42:25 PM

From the professional sports competitor to the weekend warrior, all athletes can optimize their performance by eating green vegetables. Unfortunately many people committed to exercise and strength training put an inordinate amount of credence on protein and carbohydrates—often at the expense of green vegetables. Studies show that the best, most natural option for athletes who want to boost their endurance on the track or in the gym is more green vegetables—particularly dark, leafy green vegetables.

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Gut Dysbiosis

Posted by Spectrum Pharmacy Products on Jan 12, 2017 11:30:00 AM

When bad germs start to outnumber the good germs in the body—specifically in the gastrointestinal tract, a microbial imbalance occurs creating an unpleasant condition known as gut dysbiosis. Most microbial colonies in the body are beneficial and benign, aiding in many essential and useful functions including digestion, building immunity, and overall health. However, when the body undergoes an alteration of good bacteria, a microbial imbalance occurs with foreign species increasing to fill the void.

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How Are You Preparing For Compliance With USP 800?

Posted by Spectrum Pharmacy Products on Dec 15, 2016 6:54:51 AM

New standards have been outlined by the Compounding Expert Committee and the Compounding with Hazardous Drugs Expert Panel concerning the handling of hazardous drugs in healthcare settings. These apply not only to the compounding process and but also to administration of these drugs to patients. Many of these drugs have been traditionally mixed on a variety of spaces—like countertops and workbenches—exposing the compounding professionals. With recent research bringing attention to the often hazardous side effects, USP 800 requires use of PPE, or personal protective equipment, for all professionals involved in the compounding process. In addition to PPE, USP 800 suggests personnel training, custodial waste removal training, and specific controls for maintaining sterility and safety.

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Spectrum Pharmacy Products, a division of Spectrum Chemical, is a global supplier of high quality chemicals, pharmacy supplies and equipment.

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