SANDOZ/VANGARD TO PROVIDE PREFILLED MEDICATION CARDS
SANDOZ/VANGARD TO PROVIDE PREFILLED MEDICATION CARDS to long- term care pharmacies and other selected health care facilities commencing immediately, Vangard Labs parent Medical Technology Systems announced Nov. 9. Under a contract between Vangard and Sandoz subsidiary Creighton Products, a joint venture has been established (Glasgow Pharmaceuticals) that will use the Vangard production facilities in Glasgow, Ky. to manufacture, package and distribute medication cards to the long-term health care industry. The two companies signed a letter of intent in April to form an alliance to produce medication cards prefilled with generic pharmaceuticals purchased by the joint venture. At the time, Med- Tech anticipated a possible expansion of the market to include brandname products other than those made by Sandoz. Med-Tech's core business is supplying medication card packaging equipment, supplies and systems, including 6 X 9-inch cardboard medication punchboards, to pharmacists, who fill the cards with medication they purchase themselves. Med-Tech's clients cover 350,000-400,000 nursing home beds in the U.S. In 1992, Med- Tech purchased blister-pack manufacturer Vangard from Owens & Minor. The prefilled medication cards offered by the joint venture will offer cost advantages to pharmacists who currently use MedCard equipment by eliminating all packaging costs for the pharmacy and reducing the cost of medication, Med-Tech predicts. In addition, because unused drugs remain sealed in the cards, which contain 30-, 60- or 90-day supplies, they may be reclaimed. Med-Tech has calculated that its cards and machines can save up to $1 per prescription in packaging costs. Clearwater, Fla.-based Med-Tech will provide the cards to the joint venture at cost. The company anticipates that the increase in volume will more than compensate for the lower cost, resulting in "tremendous" earnings potential.
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