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FDA has approved tecovirimat (TPOXX—SIGA Technologies Inc.), the first drug with an indication for treatment of smallpox, the agency said Friday. The World Health Organization declared smallpox eradicated in 1980; however, there is concern that it could be used as a potential bioweapon.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb announced Thursday the creation of a task force to address persistent drug shortages in the United States. Although the number of new drug shortages has decreased since 2011, some medically necessary products continue to be in short supply.

A Senate report outlines systematic failures in the reporting system for suspicious opioid orders, criticizing some drug distributors and manufacturers for their roles. The report, released Thursday, also faults DEA for a years-long lull in enforcement actions. The findings, the latest in a series of reports from Sen.

FDA announced Tuesday that it is ordering labeling changes for fluoroquinolone antibiotics to strengthen warnings about the risks of mental health adverse effects and serious blood sugar disturbances.

The next ACIP meeting is scheduled for October 24–25, 2018

HHS Secretary Alex Azar on Monday called for more oversight of hospitals that get drug discounts under the federal 340B program. "By one estimate, discounted purchases under 340B totaled $16 billion in 2016 — a fourfold increase just since 2009," Azar said at the annual meeting of 340B Health, a trade group for 340B hospitals.

HEAL Initiative aimed at improving opioid misuse, addiction treatment, and pain management

Adding pharmacists to a team-based care practice model has benefited the Providence Medical Group in Oregon for more than 2 decades, as they target conditions including diabetes, asthma, and hypertension. During that time, Providence increased its number of pharmacists from 1 to 21 in more than 40 patient-centered medical homes.

A new state law in Idaho gives pharmacists in the state expanded prescribing authority. Albertsons Cos. announced that prior to the law's July 1 start date, its pharmacies received agency approval to pilot the new program.