This activity has been designed to meet the educational needs of managed care pharmacists, pharmacy directors, medical directors, quality directors, policy executives, managed care affiliated physicians, employer and government policy administrators, and other managed care administrators.
STATEMENT OF NEED
The advent of the anti-TNF class of biologic agents has created hope for many patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis (RA) — a chronic inflammatory disease that causes severe joint pain and damage. This insidious disease, which affects women two to three times more than men, often leads to loss of function and long-term disability. While these outcomes are difficult for patients and their families, it also has consequences for health care systems, including increased financial burdens on an already strained health care system.
This activity will discuss the possibility of slowing or halting the progression of RA, thereby reducing the ensuing joint damage and potentially moving patients toward clinical remission. Faculty will utilize data from published trials, expert opinion, and established managed care pharmacy practices to show the benefits, clinical findings and practical steps toward gaining control and potentially driving this disease into remission. In addition, faculty will discuss the benefits of aggressive therapeutic approaches, costs associated with the potential lack of therapeutic response, new disease activity reporting techniques, and practical pharmacy drug utilization management techniques for RA and biologic agents.
After completing this activity, the participant should be better able to:
- Specify the clinical and financial impact and benefits (both short-term and long-term) of the treatment of RA with advanced biologic and specialty products.
- Discuss clinical trials and techniques that correlate disease activity to outcomes in RA.
- Describe the impact of anti-TNF agents, including their effectiveness regarding disease stabilization and improvement in patients with RA.
- Evaluate the utility of emerging and commonly used clinical and drug utilization review (DUR) measures for the treatment of RA.
- Identify emerging tools to more effectively manage a plans' overall RA population in a systematic fashion.
- Provide accurate and appropriate counsel as part of the treatment team.
DISCLOSURE OF CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
The Annenberg Center assesses conflict of interest with its instructors, planners, managers and other individuals who are in a position to control the content of CPE activities. All relevant conflicts of interest that are identified are thoroughly vetted by the Annenberg Center for fair balance, scientific objectivity of studies utilized in this activity, and patient care recommendations. The Annenberg Center is committed to providing its learners with high quality CPE activities and related materials that promote improvements or quality in healthcare and not a specific proprietary business interest of a commercial interest.
The faculty reported the following financial relationships or relationships to products or devices they or their spouse/life partner have with commercial interests related to the content of this CPE activity:
Neal S. Birnbaum, MD, Faculty, Consulting Fees: UCB, Centocor Fees for Non-CME: Amgen/Pfizer, Abbott, Centocor, UCB.
James T. Kenney, Jr, RPh, MBA, Faculty, No financial interest/relationships relating to the topic of this activity.
Robert J. Lipsy, PharmD, BCPS, FASHP, Faculty, No financial interest/relationships relating to the topic of this activity.
Maria Lopes, MD, MS, Faculty, Consulting Fees: Lilly, Novartis, Pfizer, Medimmune.
The planners and managers reported the following financial relationships or relationships to products or devices they or their spouse/life partner have with commercial interests related to the content of this CPE activity:
Steve Casebeer, MBA, Impact Education, LLC, Planner, No financial interest/relationships relating to the topic of this activity.
The following PIM planners and managers, Jan Hixon, RN, BSN, MA; Trace Hutchison, PharmD; Julia Kimball, RN, BSN; Samantha Mattiucci, PharmD; Jan Schultz, RN, MSN, CCMEP; Patricia Staples, MSN, NP-C, CCRN, and Gordon West, PhD, CCMEP hereby state that they or their spouse/life partner do not have any financial relationships or relationships to products or devices with any commercial interest related to the content of this activity of any amount during the past 12 months.
METHOD OF PARTICIPATION AND REQUEST FOR CREDIT
There are no fees for participating and receiving CPE credit for this activity. During the period January 31, 2011 through July 31, 2012 participants must 1) read the learning objectives and faculty disclosures; 2) study the educational activity; 3) successfully complete the online post-test, with a passing score of 70% or better; 4) complete the online evaluation form. Upon successful completion of post-test and evaluation, you will have access to an immediate online certificate.
DISCLOSURE OF UNLABELED USE
This educational activity may contain discussion of published and/or investigational uses of agents that are not indicated by the FDA. The Annenberg Center, Postgraduate Institute for Medicine (PIM), Impact Education, LLC and Centocor Ortho Biotech do not recommend the use of any agent outside of the labeled indications.
The opinions expressed in the educational activity are those of the faculty and do not necessarily represent the views of the Annenberg Center, PIM, Impact Education, LLC, and Centocor Ortho Biotech. Please refer to the official prescribing information for each product for discussion of approved indications, contraindications, and warnings.
Participants have an implied responsibility to use the newly acquired information to enhance patient outcomes and their own professional development. The information presented in this activity is not meant to serve as a guideline for patient management. Any procedures, medications, or other courses of diagnosis or treatment discussed or suggested in this activity should not be used by clinicians without evaluation of their patient's conditions and possible contraindications on dangers in use, review of any applicable manufacturer's product information, and comparison with recommendations of other authorities.