The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) issued comments following the release of U.S. Pharmacopeia's (USP) Proposed General Chapter <17> Prescription Container Labeling recommendations. In the letter, NACDS highlighted its work with USP on prescription container labeling, and also urged greater flexibility and open dialogue with pharmacy and prescriber communities as review of these recommendations continues.
"The chain pharmacy industry shares the goal of providing prescription container labels that are useful for patients. Our members have devoted significant resources and time to developing prescription container labels that are designed to provide patients with the useful information that they need to take their medications as prescribed," NACDS stated in its comment letter.
In the letter, NACDS addressed concerns with some of the recommendations, including technological issues, cost concerns, legal restrictions, prescriber requirements, container and label size limitations, as well as linguistic challenges.
NACDS also highlighted the role of pharmacy in delivering medication therapy management services which can improve medication adherence - taking one's prescription as prescribed. Poor medication adherences costs the U.S. approximately $290 billion annually - 13 percent of total healthcare expenditures. Providing concise, understandable prescription container labeling can further assist patients in adhering to their medication regimens to improve health and reduce costs.
"We ask USP to consider outreach and further interaction with prescribers, pharmacies and pharmacists for further discussion and to develop a greater understanding of the issues for pharmacies," the letter stated.