Digital Access

Digital Access
Access saukvalley.com from all your digital devices and receive breaking news and updates from around the area.

Home Delivery

Home Delivery
Local news, prep sports, Chicago sports, local and regional entertainment, business, home and lifestyle, food, classified and more! News you use every day! Daily, Daily including the e-Edition or e-Edition only.

Text Alerts

Text Alerts
Choose your news! Select the text alerts you want to receive: breaking news, prep sports scores, school closings, weather, and more. Text alerts are a free service from SaukValley.com, but text rates may apply.

Email Newsletters

Email Newsletters
We'll deliver news & updates to your inbox. Sign up for free e-newsletters today.
Health & Medical

Hospital groups start generic drug company

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) – Several major hospital groups Thursday launched their own generic drug company to tackle chronic shortages and high prices.

The new company, Civica Rx, plans to start with 14 widely used hospital drugs long in short supply. The company isn’t disclosing the drugs’ names for competitive reasons, but they include a mix of generic pills, patches and injectable drugs for treating infections, pain and heart conditions, board chairman Dan Liljenquist said.

“The mission of Civica is to make sure these drugs remain in the public domain, that they’re available and affordable to everyone,” he said.

Drug shortages have been widespread for more than a decade, particularly for inexpensive generic drugs, due to manufacturers consolidating, stopping production of low-profit medicines and having to fix manufacturing problems.

Hospitals are particularly hard hit and frequently must scramble to find scarce medicines, often at huge price markups, or come up with workarounds that may not be as effective or safe for patients.

Besides creating a reliable supply for its 500 hospitals, Civica aims to reduce drug prices by about 20 percent. The drugs will be sold to nonmember hospitals as well, at slightly higher prices, Liljenquist said.

The company, based in the Salt Lake City area, plans to make some of the generics itself and hire companies to produce others, he said. It is aiming to get its first medicines on the market by mid- to late 2019.

Civica was founded and funded by three health foundations and seven hospital groups, among them Intermountain Healthcare, a 23-hospital system based in Salt Lake City where Liljenquist is chief strategy officer. Veterans Affairs and the American Hospital Association also are participating.

Chief executive of the not-for-profit company will be Martin VanTrieste, the retired head of manufacturing quality at biotech drugmaker Amgen.

___

Follow Linda A. Johnson at https://twitter.com/LindaJ_onPharma

___

The Associated Press Health & Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

Loading more