March 19, 2012
Medicare recipients in Maryland saved $46.2 million in prescription drug costs because of health care reform, the Obama Administration said today. The savings were achieved with rebates and discounts to ease the burden of the donut hole, when patients reach certain limits that require them to pay 100 percent of their prescription drug costs. The announcement was made as health care reform celebrates its second anniversary this week. In Maryland, 73,269 Medicare beneficiaries have saved an average of $630.19 onprescription drugs costs. The savings came from a one-time $250 rebate check to seniors who hit the “donut hole” coverage gap in 2010 and a 50 percent discount on covered brand-name drugs in the donut hole in 2011.
February 23, 2012
Harford County sheriff's deputies and Maryland State Police report: Aberdeen Amy Joy Warthen, 27, of the 1900 block of Fletcher Road, was arrested on two bench warrants Tuesday in cases in which she was charged with trespassing and second-degree escape. Eric Douglas Nelson, 34, of the 300 block of Paradise Road, was charged Tuesday with obtaining a prescription by altering an order and possessing a forged prescription. Brandon Marquez Robinson, 25, of the 900 block of Cambridge Road, was arrested on a bench warrant Wednesday in a case in which he was charged with driving with a suspended license.
January 31, 2012
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's Carl Kotowski, assistant special agent in charge of the DEA Baltimore Office, presented an award to Harford County Executive David R. Craig Jan. 17 in honor of the county's successful role in the nationwide prescription drug take back days. Over the past 18 months Harford County has collected 3,750 pounds of unused or expired prescription medications for safe and proper disposal. "In the October 2011 take back initiative, Harford County ranked number one in total collection and participation," Kotowski said in a press release.
December 8, 2011
State health officials took the unusual step Thursday of suspending the authority of a Salisbury pain doctor to write prescriptions for opiates, narcotics and all other controlled dangerous substances commonly used to treat pain. The officials said Dr. Brent R. Fox wasn't conducting thorough exams of patients and was prescribing drugs in amounts outside of the standards. They will consider a permanent revocation next week and have referred the case to the state Board of Physicians for investigation of his right to practice medicine.
October 28, 2011
Local police departments are participating in the National Take Back Initiative this weekend by providing an opportunity for residents to turn in expired or unwanted prescriptive substances and other medications. At the take-back day, controlled, non-controlled and over-the-counter substances will all be collected, and donors will remain anonymous; no requests for identification will be made. Participants should remove any identifying information that might be found on a prescription label on a container.
October 27, 2011
The next Nationwide Prescription Drug Take Back Day will be Saturday in Harford County. People can turn in prescription drugs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the parking lot of the county government office building at 220 S. Main St. in Bel Air. The parking lot is at the corner of Business Route 1 (Baltimore Pike) and South Main Street. No questions will be asked when the medications are turned in. The event is sponsored by the Harford County Department of Community Services and its Office of Drug Control Policy.
October 24, 2011
As a practicing physician for over 40 years, I was saddened and disappointed to read that our own U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski lead the effort to successfully defeat a Senate amendment that would have made it easier for individuals to get prescription drugs from Canada for general use. She argued that "opening the borders to Canadian-made drugs could endanger American consumers. " "We could be importing death," she was quoted as saying. Shame on you, Senator Mikulski! Contrary to rumors from the pharmaceutical lobbyists, Canadians are not dying in the streets from poisoned medications.
October 5, 2011
University of Maryland women's basketball coach Brenda Frese said she was heartbroken that a chemotherapy drug used to treat her 3-year-old son, Tyler, for leukemia was in short supply and possibly unavailable. When she discovered that some companies have been accused of putting profit over production or distribution of cytarabine and other drugs, she was angry — and she began writing letters. "This is life or death, and the thought of some drugs being put out of reach made my stomach sick," she said in an interview.
July 31, 2011
Mention the war on drugs, and most people conjure up images of poor inner-city neighborhoods terrorized by desperate addicts and violent drug gangs. But addiction isn't just big-city problem. Across the country, rural and suburban communities are waging their own quiet struggle against the scourge of drug abuse. And as Harford County officials have recently been forced to acknowledge, it's becoming an increasingly uphill battle. At a bail hearing this month for a 42-year-old Aberdeen man accused of distributing illegal prescription drugs, Assistant State's Attorney Diane Adkins-Topin told the judge that "the number one problem drug in Harford County is now Oxycontin.
July 25, 2011
In the scramble to cut the nation's debt burden, President Obama, congressional Democrats and even some Republicans have proposed squeezing money out of Medicare by changing the way it pays forprescription drugs. They claim this would save $112 billion over 10 years. But if passed it would be a disaster, costing hundreds of thousands of jobs in the biopharmaceutical industry - an important contributor to the Maryland economy - driving up drug prices and discouraging drug innovation.