AstraZeneca has announced a new program with more than 26,000 national, regional, and independent pharmacies to broaden stocking of Brilinta (ticagrelor) tablets, greatly enhancing its retail availability in the United States. This pharmacy program is another effort by AstraZeneca to help patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) and healthcare providers maintain continuity of care throughout the course of treatment. AstraZeneca is working with payers as well as pharmacies to assist patients in filling their prescriptions for Brilinta once they leave the hospital.

Participating pharmacy chains in this program include Walmart, Rite Aid, Kmart, Sam’s Club, Publix, Kerr Drug, Wegmans, Giant Eagle, Tops Markets, Kinney Drug, Bartell Drug, Bi-Lo, and Winn-Dixie. These participating retail chains are not exclusive distributors and Brilinta may be available at other retail pharmacy chains and independent pharmacies.

“Our pharmacy program is one of many initiatives we have in place to help ensure that patients with ACS have widespread access to Brilinta, an important medication indicated to reduce their risk for thrombotic cardiovascular events,” says James Ferguson, MD, Executive Director, Medical Affairs and Strategic Development, U.S., and Vice President for Global Medical Affairs at AstraZeneca. “When a treating physician prescribes Brilinta, it is critical that their patients start and finish the entire course of treatment without unnecessary disruptions, particularly when transitioning from the hospital to home. We believe this program will truly help patients to get access to a medication that is now part of multiple guidelines' recommended treatment following an ACS event.”

Brilinta is indicated to reduce the rate of thrombotic cardiovascular (CV) events in patients with ACS (unstable angina [UA], non–ST-elevation myocardial infarction [NSTEMI], or ST-elevation myocardial infarction [STEMI]). In PLATO, Brilinta has been shown to reduce the rate of a combined end point of CV death, myocardial infarction (MI), or stroke compared to clopidogrel. In PLATO, the difference between treatments was driven by CV death and MI with no difference in stroke. In patients treated with an artery-opening procedure known as percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), Brilinta reduces the rate of stent thrombosis.

Brilinta has been studied in ACS in combination with aspirin. Maintenance doses of aspirin above 100 mg decreased the effectiveness of Brilinta. Avoid maintenance doses of aspirin above 100 mg daily.

Release Date: December 4, 2012
Source: AstraZeneca