Sources of Information for Pharmacists
Many pharmacists do not know where to obtain the information that will allow them to be good providers of products of biotechnology. This textbook provides much of the essential background information in one source.
An excellent source of information on biotech-nology in general, and specific products in particular, is the biotech drug industry. Many manufacturer-sponsored programs are available describing ap-proved biotech products and those likely to come to market in the near future. Manufacturer programs provide extensive information about the disease states for which their products are indicated as well as product-specific information. Manufacturers are pre-pared to help pharmacists in the most effective provision of products and services to hospital-based and ambulatory patients. However, many pharma-cists are unaware of these services and how to obtain them. A web search of specific products will lead to the product and manufacturer’s websites where this information can be accessed.
The information provided by manufacturers can help pharmacists confidently provide biotechnology products to their patients. The services provided generally fall into three categories: customer/medical services and support, educational materials, and reimbursement information. Manufacturers may have a separate number for reimbursement questions. Table 2 lists the manufacturer’s toll-free assistance numbers and web addresses for obtaining product and reimbursement information in North America. Vaccines and insulin products are not included in this table since these products were previously available in a non-recombinant form which was used in a similar manner. Moreover, the recombinant form is not significantly higher in price than the non-recombinant product.