Content about Drug Fix

March 8, 2013

OutcomesMTM, a medication therapy management delivery system, last week recognized its top chain and independent pharmacies for 2012. Walgreens and Kerr Drug were named top large pharmacy chain and top regional pharmacy chain, respectively.

MTM matters, and people are keeping score. And it's something you can expect to see more of in the age of accountable care and star-based quality ratings.

OutcomesMTM, a medication therapy management delivery system, last week recognized its top chain and independent pharmacies for 2012. Walgreens and Kerr Drug were named top large pharmacy chain and top regional pharmacy chain, respectively. 

MTM matters, and people are keeping score. And it's something you can expect to see more of in the age of accountable care and star-based quality ratings.  

March 8, 2013

The number of Americans who want technology to play a role in their healthcare is growing, as up to 64% of Americans use online health resources, and 40% use them to self-diagnose, according to a new survey conducted by the Atlantic and GlaxoSmithKline. Yet while 94% of those using online resources consider them important to their health, only 12% report contacting doctors via email or text message regarding a health question.

The Atlantic-GSK survey and other surveys indicate that the group favoring online health information tends to skew younger.

The number of Americans who want technology to play a role in their healthcare is growing, as up to 64% of Americans use online health resources, and 40% use them to self-diagnose, according to a new survey conducted by the Atlantic and GlaxoSmithKline. Yet while 94% of those using online resources consider them important to their health, only 12% report contacting doctors via email or text message regarding a health question.

March 8, 2013

Just about every healthcare practitioner recommends over-the-counter medicines to their patients. And nearly 3-out-of-4 make that OTC recommendation as the first therapy option, according to a recent survey released by the Consumer Healthcare Products Association.

This is another proof point that OTC medicines play an important role in holding down cost.

Just about every healthcare practitioner recommends over-the-counter medicines to their patients. And nearly 3-out-of-4 make that OTC recommendation as the first therapy option, according to a recent survey released by the Consumer Healthcare Products Association. 

This is another proof point that OTC medicines play an important role in holding down cost. 

March 1, 2013

Sears Holdings is adding some of its own fare to its mygofer.com offering, an online grocery service that "turbo-charges brick-and-mortar retailer assortments by allowing customers to get items from those stores where and when they want them in new, convenient ways."

"At mygofer, your list is our command," Sears tells shoppers on its website. "Shop with us for your prescriptions, groceries, beauty products, clothes, shoes, electronics and a whole lot more you might not expect. So whatever's on your list, we can help you get it — with incredible speed and no hassles. That's convenience."

Sears Holdings is adding some of its own fare to its mygofer.com offering, an online grocery service that "turbo-charges brick-and-mortar retailer assortments by allowing customers to get items from those stores where and when they want them in new, convenient ways." 

March 1, 2013

Rite Aid announced Friday that it had expanded its "virtual clinic" model to additional markets, now offering NowClinic Online Care service in 58 stores.

Retail clinics are an area in which Rite Aid has not invested to the same degree as Walgreens and CVS, but NowClinic shows that there are more ways to offer clinical services in a retail pharmacy setting than building an actual clinic. In 2011, Rite Aid became the first to provide such virtual clinics in a retail pharmacy setting when it launched the program as a pilot in nine stores in Detroit.

Rite Aid announced Friday that it had expanded its "virtual clinic" model to additional markets, now offering NowClinic Online Care service in 58 stores.

Retail clinics are an area in which Rite Aid has not invested to the same degree as Walgreens and CVS, but NowClinic shows that there are more ways to offer clinical services in a retail pharmacy setting than building an extra clinic. In 2011, Rite Aid became the first to provide such virtual clinics in a retail pharmacy setting when it launched the program as a pilot in nine stores in Detroit.

March 1, 2013

Upon the closing of Supervalu's sale of five pharmacy banners to Albertsons LLC, long-time Supervalu vet Dan Salemi will assume the role of president of pharmacy at the new Albertsons LLC. Salemi will succeed Supervalu president pharmacy operations Chris Dimos, who will stay on board until the deal is done.

Albertsons LLC gets a very talented pharmacy executive to run its pharmacy business, no doubt, in Dan Salemi. And with more than three decades working across Supervalu's banners, he's well-versed in the nuances of the Supervalu pharmacy business in each market.

Upon the closing of Supervalu's sale of five pharmacy banners to Albertsons LLC, long-time Supervalu vet Dan Salemi will assume the role of president of pharmacy at the new Albertsons LLC. Salemi will succeed Supervalu president pharmacy operations Chris Dimos, who will stay on board until the deal is done. 

February 22, 2013

The YMCA is offering a demonstration project to show that its YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program — part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's broader National Diabetes Prevention Program — can lower the incidence of Type 2 diabetes and reduce medical costs incurred by Medicare. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation is funding the project, whereby YMCAs in 17 communities that deliver the program will offer it at no cost to 10,000 Medicare enrollees over the next three years, and the YMCA expects it to save Medicare $4.2 million over three years and $53 million over six years.

It's been said that, "It takes a village to raise a child," and because chronic disease is an issue that affects communities as a whole - not just individuals - it would make sense for community-based organizations to target a growing national health crisis like the diabetes epidemic.

The YMCA is offering a demonstration project to show that its YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program — part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's broader National Diabetes Prevention Program — can lower the incidence of Type 2 diabetes and reduce medical costs incurred by Medicare.

February 22, 2013

Safeway on Thursday reported a 1.3% annual sales lift to $44.2 billion for its fiscal 2012. The year-end sales lift was driven by increased fuel sales and a same-store sales increase of 0.5% (excluding fuel), the grocer reported.

However, from listening to this last conference call, coming out of a year that has been framed more by Safeway's challenges than Safeway's opportunity on Wall Street, you get the sense that 2012 was 2012 and that this 2013 party has only just begun.

Safeway on Thursday reported a 1.3% annual sales lift to $44.2 billion for its fiscal 2012. The year-end sales lift was driven by increased fuel sales and a same-store sales increase of 0.5% (excluding fuel), the grocer reported. 

February 22, 2013

Competing in the new age of retail, where bricks, clicks and anything in between compete for a larger share of the omnichannel customer, will require new skill sets and a generally better educated workforce at every level of the organization, but particularly at the store level.

Walgreens on Friday opened the doors to "Walgreens University,” an internal education center equipped with technology-enhanced classrooms, a mock drug store and video-conferencing capabilities. The new learning center will be the base of operations for employee educational programs offered online and in regional locations nationwide.

February 15, 2013

Eighty-eight members of the House of Representatives fired off a letter Monday to postmaster general and CEO of the U.S. Postal Service Patrick Donahoe urging the agency not to eliminate Saturday delivery of mail, saying it would impede the ability of people who depend on mail-order pharmacies to receive their medications.

It's no secret that the retail pharmacy industry and pharmacy benefit managers don't always see eye-to-eye, with the latter being the main provider of mail-order pharmacy services in the country and often touting them as an alternative to going to the drug store, while the former emphasize the face-to-face interaction with pharmacists not usually possible with mail-order. But between the back-and-forth, millions of patients still depend on mail order pharmacy, and the cost effectiveness that mail-order pharmacies frequently promote themselves as offering could be at risk if they must use more expensive delivery methods.

Eighty-eight members of the House of Representatives fired off a letter Monday to postmaster general and CEO of the U.S. Postal Service Patrick Donahoe urging the agency not to eliminate Saturday delivery of mail, saying it would impede the ability of people who depend on mail-order pharmacies to receive their medications.

February 15, 2013

A smoking cessation program developed by the University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy will be deployed through Safeway pharmacies, the university announced. As part of the program, Safeway pharmacists will receive special training in counseling techniques.

It's one of the first partnerships of its kind and another example of how community pharmacy will be stepping into a more preventive healthcare role. You can expect to see more types of these smoking cessation programs along with other proactive health interventions tackling weight loss and encouraging healthier behaviors.

A smoking cessation program developed by the University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy will be deployed through Safeway pharmacies, the university announced. As part of the program, Safeway pharmacists will receive special training in counseling techniques. 

February 15, 2013

Telehealth is expected to experience a sharp rise in the number of patients, according a new report by health market research firm IHS, which projects that telehealth will reach 1.8 million patients around the world by 2017.

Telehealth is expected to experience a sharp rise in the number of patients, according a new report by health market research firm IHS, which projects that telehealth will reach 1.8 million patients around the world by 2017.

February 8, 2013

RadioShack on Thursday evening tapped Joe Magnacca, who played a key role in making Walgreens' front-end transformation pop, to be the small-box electronics retailer's chief executive. On Friday morning, RadioShack's shares jumped as Wall Street absorbed the news.

And while that hire makes perfect sense for RadioShack, where does that leave Walgreens? While merchants the likes of Magnacca don't exactly grow on trees, in classic hedgehog style the news also speaks to the depth of Walgreen's bench. The company has a lot of faith in Bryan Pugh. They hired him to be chief merchant before they bought Duane Reade and acquired a problem just about any retailer would love to have: two very talented men leading the merchandising drive.

RadioShack on Thursday evening tapped Joe Magnacca, who played a key role in making Walgreens' front-end transformation pop, to be the small-box electronics retailer's chief executive. On Friday morning, RadioShack's shares jumped as Wall Street absorbed the news. 

February 8, 2013

During its fourth-quarter conference call on Wednesday, CVS Caremark officially unveiled its foray into the international drug store space with the acquisition of Brazilian retailer Onofre, the eighth-largest drug chain in Brazil.

Now that the other shoe has dropped, what's next?

While chains are prevalent, Brazil remains a highly fragmented market that is clearly ripe with opportunities thanks, in part, to an aging population, a decline in unemployment and a rise in incomes.

During its fourth quarter conference call on Wednesday, CVS Caremark officially unveiled its foray into the international drug store space with the acquisition of Brazilian retailer Onofre, the eighth-largest drug chain in Brazil.

Now that the other shoe has dropped, what's next?

While chains are prevalent, Brazil remains a highly fragmented market that is clearly ripe with opportunities thanks, in part, to an aging population, a decline in unemployment and a rise in incomes.

February 8, 2013

A new report by Francesco International identified $35.7 billion worth of potential Rx-to-OTC switches in a wide range of indications, from hypertension and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder to high cholesterol and erectile dysfunction, and the Food and Drug Administration has been looking at ways technology and pharmacists could be employed to ensure that patients taking drugs new to the consumer health space take them appropriately.

With growth in traditional pharmaceuticals expected to slow down significantly, a growing number of drug makers — branded and generic alike — see specialty drugs as their main sources of revenue for the foreseeable future. At the same time, those drug makers not invested in specialty may be looking for growth opportunities in consumer health.

A new report by Francesco International identified $35.7 billion worth of potential Rx-to-OTC switches in a wide range of indications, from hypertension and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder to high cholesterol and erectile dysfunction, and the Food and Drug Administration has been looking at ways technology and pharmacists could be employed to ensure that patients taking drugs new to the consumer health space take them appropriately

February 1, 2013

Walgreens promoted Joseph Magnacca to EVP from SVP. Magnacca also retains his title as president of daily living products and solutions. In this capacity, Magnacca will continue to oversee Walgreens merchandising and inventory strategy, private brands, insights and analytics, and the New York-based Duane Reade drug store chain, which Walgreens acquired in 2010.

And that means Magnacca will continue to do what he does best, which is change everything you've ever thought you knew about drug store retailing across the front-end. If you've ever met him in person, you'd know he's not a static person. He doesn't stand still. He's always moving toward identifying that next thing, that next offering or presentation that resonates with people at the crossroads of health and happy and at the same time is something they never thought they'd find in a drug store.

Walgreens promoted Joseph Magnacca to EVP from SVP. Magnacca also retains his title as president of daily living products and solutions. In this capacity, Magnacca will continue to oversee Walgreens merchandising and inventory strategy, private brands, insights and analytics, and the New York-based Duane Reade drug store chain, which Walgreens acquired in 2010. 

February 1, 2013

A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota and nearby healthcare institutions shows that patients with diabetes experience better outcomes when they undergo face-to-face medication therapy management sessions with pharmacists.

Drug Store News has reported enough about the benefits of MTM to fill a book, but a scientific study showing a demonstrable benefit to it only makes the case stronger. It speaks to the growing role of the pharmacist as a key member of the patient's healthcare team, every bit as important as nurses and doctors, and also points to a role of growing importance to pharmacy retailers themselves as they seek to distinguish themselves in the marketplace.

A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota and nearby healthcare institutions shows that patients with diabetes experience better outcomes when they undergo face-to-face medication therapy management sessions with pharmacists.

February 1, 2013

Take Care Health Systems, which is owned by Walgreens, has formed a clinical collaboration with Community Health Network to improve access to care for patients throughout central Indiana.

Take Care Health Systems, which is owned by Walgreens, has formed a clinical collaboration with Community Health Network to improve access to care for patients throughout central Indiana.

Such collaborations are not only important for improved access to healthcare services by patients, but it also illustrate the growing role that they play within the healthcare system and the acceptance of such clinics among the medical community.

January 25, 2013

For the week ended Jan. 19, flu incidence was predominant in the central United States and picking up across the West Coast. According to data provided through the U.S. Outpatient Influenza-like Illness Surveillance Network, 4.3% of patient visits reported through the network were due to influenza-like illness, above the national baseline of 2.2%.

At this time last year, the conversation was all about the flu season that never materialized. Only one week in January last year did flu-like incidence rise above the 2.2% national baseline, and then only slightly. So cough-cold and flu comparisons across the front-end and pharmacy were both projected to be double-digit positive if even there were a moderate flu season this year.

For the week ended Jan. 19, flu incidence was predominant in the central United States and picking up across the West Coast. According to data provided through the U.S. Outpatient Influenza-like Illness Surveillance Network, 4.3% of patient visits reported through the network were due to influenza-like illness, above the national baseline of 2.2%. 

January 25, 2013

Walmart recently announced that it would source $50 billion of the products sold in its stores in the United States over the next 10 years, according to a report in USA Today.

"Be American; buy American" has long been a slogan that makes buying U.S.-made goods sound nothing less than patriotic because it helps create American jobs, much like CVS' initiatives to create jobs for veterans, and the recent Made-in-USA fervor around the country has more than demonstrated that. But there are practical reasons for sourcing domestically as well, making it high time for retailers to start looking into putting more products with the "Made in USA" label on their shelves.

Walmart recently announced that it would source $50 billion of the products sold in its stores in the United States over the next 10 years, according to a report in USA Today.

January 25, 2013

SCIO Health Analytics and Walgreens have teamed up to help employers gain maximum return on investment through worksite health centers. Through the partnership, SCIO will provide actionable data and reporting to demonstrate the value and impact of worksite health centers, while giving Walgreens’ clients areas of opportunity to further improve employee health and reduce costs.

More and more employers get it, and there is growing belief that as the clock ticks down to 2014 and full implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, even more employers will get it. In the meantime, projects like this that help provide outcome reporting will help make the ROI picture even clearer for big employers who still might be on the fence.

SCIO Health Analytics and Walgreens have teamed up to help employers gain maximum return on investment through worksite health centers. Through the partnership, SCIO will provide actionable data and reporting to demonstrate the value and impact of worksite health centers, while giving Walgreens’ clients areas of opportunity to further improve employee health and reduce costs.

January 18, 2013

Walgreens and Televisa Consumer Products announced an expansion of their distribution across Walgreens with the inclination to share additional insights into the Hispanic community. Televisa's product portfolio spans from beauty items in haircare and skincare to OTC solutions in the cough/cold and pain relief categories.

Did you ever wonder what would happen if a broadcaster dabbled in the consumer packaged goods world? Would they be able to drive trial at an exponentially cheaper rate because they could flood their own airwaves with in-house commercials and product placements? Maybe. In the U.S. market it'd be difficult and becoming ever more so given the continued fracturing of media outlets. Network television operations today have to contend with hundreds of cable/satellite channels that are each creating their own content, not to mention relatively new primetime competitors like the Internet or mobile apps. In other words, it'd be difficult to reach a critical mass of viewers and at the same time substitute paid product placements with in-house (in other words not paid) product placements in the U.S. media marketplace.

Walgreens and Televisa Consumer Products announced an expansion of their distribution across Walgreens with the inclination to share additional insights into the Hispanic community. Televisa's product portfolio spans from beauty items in haircare and skincare to OTC solutions in the cough/cold and pain relief categories. 

January 18, 2013

Costco announced in its January 2013 magazine that it would begin offering pharmacy benefit management services, targeting small businesses and highlighting a 200-employee company based in Washington state.

It remains to be seen whether the club retailer's efforts to compete with the existing PBM businesses of companies like CVS Caremark, Walgreens and Walmart will be successful, and analysts like Citi's Deborah Weinswig appear skeptical that they will. But whatever the outcome, it's clear that Costco is looking to compete in a bigger way.

Costco announced in its January 2013 magazine that it would begin offering pharmacy benefit management services, targeting small businesses and highlighting a 200-employee company based in Washington state.

January 18, 2013

Duane Reade experienced nearly a 20% boost in sales of its private label hosiery thanks to a seven-week social media campaign dubbed “Show Us Some Leg,” according to a published report.
The important takeaway here is that the success of this campaign speaks to the overall importance of engaging consumers beyond the walls of the bricks-and-mortar store.

Duane Reade experienced nearly a 20% boost in sales of its private label hosiery thanks to a seven-week social media campaign dubbed “Show Us Some Leg,” according to a published report.

The important takeaway here is that the success of this campaign speaks to the overall importance of engaging consumers beyond the walls of the bricks-and-mortar store.

January 11, 2013

Last week in a much anticipated move, Cerberus Capital Management acquired 877 supermarkets from Supervalu for $100 million in cash and the assumption of $3.2 billion in debt. Also part of the deal, a Cerberus-led investor consortium will provide the remaining Supervalu business an influx with the purchase of up to 30% of Supervalu stock at a purchase price of $4 per share.

Following the transaction, Supervalu will be a $17 billion business comprised mostly of its distribution business, which will represent 47% of revenues, Save-A-Lot (25%) and 191 regional supermarkets (28%).

Last week in a much anticipated move, Cerberus Capital Management acquired 877 supermarkets from Supervalu for $100 million in cash and the assumption of $3.2 billion in debt.  Also part of the deal, a Cerberus-led investor consortium will provide the remaining Supervalu business an influx with the purchase of up to 30% of Supervalu stock at a purchase price of $4 per share.