Drug combo can be deadly


Spironolactone, a diuretic used to treat heart failure, can cause a risk of sudden death in seniors when given with the antibiotic trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, Toronto researchers have found.

FDA approves new kind of oral diabetes drug


The Food and Drug Administration recently approved a new kind of type 2 diabetes drug to help better control glucose levels.

IT project aims to reduce hospital readmissions


As the government strives to limit rehospitalizations, one nursing home and a couple of hospitals in New York City are staying ahead of the pack.

CMS confirms 50% discount for drugs in Medicare Part D coverage gap in 2011

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently disclosed that 234 drug manufacturers that sell drugs covered by Medicare Part D have signed a pledge to provide a 50% discount to seniors who fall into the coverage gap, or doughnut hole.

Senate committee addresses drug laws that hamper nursing home care

The Senate Special Committee on Aging Wednesday held a listening session on ways federal rules on controlled substances negatively affect the ability of nurses to care for nursing home residents.

Department of Justice files suit against Johnson & Johnson in connection with kickback scheme with Omnicare

Department of Justice files suit against Johnson & Johnson in connection with kickback scheme with Omnicare

The U.S. Department of Justice on Friday filed a lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson for its alleged role in a kickback scheme with Omnicare, the nation's largest long-term care pharmacy chain.

Study: Nursing home residents with most to gain from Medicare Part D drug program are least likely to enroll

Many nursing home residents benefit from Medicare Part D but don't enroll in the prescription drug program, according to a recent study.

Cardin amendment would work to expand assisted living residents' access to prescription drugs

Assisted living providers and advocates are cheering this week after Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) introduced an amendment to the healthcare reform bill that seeks to improve some assisted living residents' access to the Medicare Part D prescription drug program and Medicaid benefits.

FDA launches medication safety initiative

The Food & Drug Administration this week introduced the Safe Use Initiative to reduce preventable harm from medications and improve patient health.

Agency's crackdown on drug thefts hurts nursing home residents, senators say

The Drug Enforcement Agency's efforts to combat narcotics abuse and theft in nursing homes actually negatively affect those residents and hospice care patients who need pain medications, two senators recently argued.

Lawmakers look to eliminate Medicare Part D gap earlier than planned

Lawmakers are stepping up efforts to close the Medicare Part D doughnut hole, a coverage gap in the prescription drug program for seniors. Political pressure may be driving them to change their timetable.

Higher doses of vitamin D help prevent falls, study finds

Seniors aged 65 and older can significantly reduce their risk of falls by taking vitamin D supplements every day. But they need to take more of the vitamin than previously thought, according to the results of a new study.

Heparin to be less potent, FDA says

Manufacturers are expected to begin shipping a new kind of heparin product on Thursday.

Pfizer to pay record $2.3 billion for promoting drugs unlawfully

Pfizer Inc., the largest drug maker in the world, will pay a record $2.3 billion in criminal and civil fines over illegal promotions of four prescription drugs.

States may suffer in long run with cuts to services for elderly, news accounts suggest

States may suffer in long run with cuts to services for elderly, news accounts suggest

In an effort to overcome budget deficits for the new fiscal year, many states have reduced Medicaid spending on services for low-income seniors. And that could have negative long-term implications, according to news reports.

Experimental new Alzheimer's treatment could recover memory

The memories of Alzheimer's patients are forgotten but not gone, to twist a popular phrase. Now, one potential new treatment might help to recover some of those lost memories. An experimental drug has the potential to recover memory and improve cognitive function if taken early in Alzheimer's development-especially when coupled with other treatments, researchers say.