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October 4, 2013

Walgreens reached a 19.1% prescription market share for its fiscal year ended Aug. 31. But that wasn't the story to come out of the Chicagoland retailer's conference call. The story was how far along Walgreens has come in its pledge to transform pharmacy.

Truth is, there isn't one aspect of the pharmacy business that hasn't been touched by Walgreens' focus on transformation. And with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act yet to come in 2014, Walgreens is far from done. See for yourself: click on DSN's Walgreens news feed — all Walgreens news, all the time — and you have one story after another about how Walgreens is helping to redefine what retail pharmacy means to employers, payers and most importantly, the patient, almost on a daily basis.

Walgreens reached a 19.1% prescription market share for its fiscal year ended Aug. 31. But that wasn't the story to come out of the Chicagoland retailer's conference call.

October 4, 2013

Walgreens president and CEO Greg Wasson and Sona Chawla, Walgreens president e-commerce, on Wednesday made a keynote presentation on the closing day of the Shop.org Annual Summit 2013 here to talk about the opportunities associated with omnichannel retailing.

CHICAGO — Walgreens president and CEO Greg Wasson and Sona Chawla, Walgreens president e-commerce, on Wednesday made a keynote presentation on the closing day of the Shop.org Annual Summit 2013 here to talk about the opportunities associated with omnichannel retailing.  

October 3, 2013

The National Retail Federation expects sales in the months of November and December to increase 3.9% to $602.1 billion, up slightly from last year’s actual 3.5% holiday season sales growth. The forecast is higher than the 10-year average holiday sales growth of 3.3%.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Retail Federation expects sales in the months of November and December to increase 3.9% to $602.1 billion, up slightly from last year’s actual 3.5% holiday season sales growth. The forecast is higher than the 10-year average holiday sales growth of 3.3%.

October 3, 2013

Stater Bros. has announced that VP of real estate Mike Slaton passed away suddenly on Sept. 28. He was 51 years old.

Stater Bros. has announced that VP of real estate Mike Slaton passed away suddenly on Sept. 28. He was 51 years old.

October 2, 2013

The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board has issued more than half a million certifications, the group said Wednesday.

WASHINGTON — The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board has issued more than half a million certifications, the group said Wednesday.

The PTCB said the number of certifications it had granted was 503,620 as of June 30. Last year alone, 39,729 candidates passed the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam.

October 2, 2013

Drug maker Valeant Pharmaceuticals International is joining an effort to oppose domestic violence, the company said Wednesday.

LAVAL, Quebec — Drug maker Valeant Pharmaceuticals International is joining an effort to oppose domestic violence, the company said Wednesday.

Valeant announced that it had formed a partnership with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence to help raise awareness of the problem, with plans to donate a portion of sales from Medicis and Obagi products to the organization.

October 1, 2013

Pharmacists in the Show-Me State have a new opportunity to demonstrate — and be paid for — their ability to help patients achieve measurable progress in fighting several chronic conditions, the National Community Pharmacists Association, the Missouri Pharmacy Association and the Missouri Pharmacist Care Network announced Tuesday.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Pharmacists in the Show-Me State have a new opportunity to demonstrate — and be paid for — their ability to help patients achieve measurable progress in fighting several chronic conditions, the National Community Pharmacists Association, the Missouri Pharmacy Association and the Missouri Pharmacist Care Network announced Tuesday.

October 1, 2013

The Department of Health and Human Services will furlough more than half of its employees due to the government shutdown, the agency said.

NEW YORK — The Department of Health and Human Services will furlough more than half of its employees due to the government shutdown, the agency said.

In announcing a contingency staffing plan for the shutdown, which started Tuesday when Congress failed to pass a budget in time, HHS said 52% of its employees would be on furlough, totaling 40,512 members of its staff. The remaining 48%, or 37,686 employees, would remain. The scheduled introduction of the health insurance exchanges mandated under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will also continue.

October 1, 2013

Customers at Rite Aid have a chance to win $2,500 in gift cards in a contest that celebrates American Pharmacists Month in October.

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Customers at Rite Aid have a chance to win $2,500 in gift cards in a contest that celebrates American Pharmacists Month in October.

October 1, 2013

Throughout the month of October, Ulta Beauty is supporting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation with fundraising initiatives.

BOLINGBROOK, Ill. — Throughout the month of October, Ulta Beauty is supporting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation with fundraising initiatives.  

As part of its efforts, customers can once again participate in the largest event of its kind — The Salon at Ulta Beauty's Cut-A-Thon. There is a salon in each of Ulta Beauty's 609 stores across the country and more than 2,000 Ulta Salon stylists will participate.

October 1, 2013

In its quest to own health and daily living, Walgreens achieved several key milestones since the beginning of fiscal 2013.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — In its quest to own health and daily living, Walgreens achieved several key milestones since the beginning of fiscal 2013.

October 1, 2013

All too often retailers fall short when it comes to meeting the healthcare needs of their consumers, who not only demand more from their overall shopping experience, but also are increasingly looking for ways to curb rising healthcare costs and live healthier lives. Today’s successful retailers are working to strike a balance of value and quality, and are developing innovative solutions to strengthen their foothold along the frontlines of U.S. healthcare.

CHICAGO — All too often retailers fall short when it comes to meeting the healthcare needs of their consumers, who not only demand more from their overall shopping experience, but also are increasingly looking for ways to curb rising healthcare costs and live healthier lives. Today’s successful retailers are working to strike a balance of value and quality, and are developing innovative solutions to strengthen their foothold along the frontlines of U.S. healthcare. In short, the winners are delivering a valuable healthcare experience.

September 30, 2013

Nutrisystem on Monday announced it will sponsor and have more than one hundred employees and their families, including CEO Dawn Zier and new Nutrisystem ambassador, Andy Baldwin, join the company at the American Diabetes Association's annual Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes in Philadelphia.

FORT WASHINGTON, Pa. — Nutrisystem on Monday announced it will sponsor and have more than 100 employees and their families, including CEO Dawn Zier and new Nutrisystem ambassador, Andy Baldwin, join the company at the American Diabetes Association's annual Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes in Philadelphia. On Oct. 5, Baldwin will walk with Zier and Fort Washington-based Nutrisystem employees as part of the company's ongoing commitment to support the fight against diabetes.

September 27, 2013

Barilla, a leading Italian pasta brand, has become the subject of an international boycott after company chairman, Guido Barilla, made remarks during a radio interview that critics have characterized as disparaging gay people.

While everyone is entitled to having a personal opinion, this is lesson 101 on what not to say. If you want your brand to reflect your personal opinion — which you are, of course, entitled to — don't be surprised if people who don't share your opinion don't want to share your brand experience either.

Barilla, a leading Italian pasta brand, has become the subject of an international boycott after company chairman, Guido Barilla, made remarks during a radio interview that critics have characterized as disparaging gay people.

September 27, 2013

H-E-B pledged to not reduce employee work hours in an effort to avoid having to cover their healthcare last week. In contrast, other employers have been cutting their employee hours to avoid the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act provision that would require healthcare coverage, according to a report published in the San Antonio Express-News.

And while some companies may be looking at ways to squeeze more out of their businesses, H-E-B, along with Walgreens and others, should be applauded for doing the right thing.

H-E-B pledged to not reduce employee work hours in an effort to avoid having to cover their healthcare last week. In contrast, other employers have been cutting their employee hours to avoid the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act provision that would require healthcare coverage, according to a report published in the San Antonio Express-News

September 27, 2013

Safeway has announced that it was awarded the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the nation's highest honor given to employers for support of the National Guard and Reserve, at a special ceremony on Sept. 26 in Washington, D.C. Safeway was one of 15 employers to receive the Freedom Award.

WASHINGTON — Safeway has announced that it was awarded the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the nation's highest honor given to employers for support of the National Guard and Reserve, at a special ceremony on Sept. 26 in Washington, D.C. Safeway was one of 15 employers to receive the Freedom Award.

September 26, 2013

H-E-B will not reduce work hours to avoid the health insurance mandates under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to a report earlier this month published by the San Antonio Express-News.

SAN ANTONIO — H-E-B will not reduce work hours to avoid the health insurance mandates under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to a report earlier this month published by the San Antonio Express-News

Currently, almost 60% of H-E-B's 76,000 employee base qualifies for health benefits, the grocer stated, as the company extends coverage to part-time employees who average at least 29 hours per week. 

September 24, 2013

A decision by the Department of Health and Human Services to resolve conflicts that arose when it issued regulations under a law that establishes privacy rules for health information technology has drawn applause from a specialty pharmacy organization.

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — A decision by the Department of Health and Human Services to resolve conflicts that arose when it issued regulations under a law that establishes privacy rules for health information technology has drawn applause from a specialty pharmacy organization.

September 23, 2013

A report funded by a Council for Responsible Nutrition Foundation grant made the case for supplementation as a key component in any healthcare cost reduction strategy. It's not news to those in the industry who already know the health benefits associated with supplementation. But for the consumer media so quick to run a negative headline, this may come as a bit of a shock.

Here's the secret. Dietary supplements are not only a part of a healthy diet, they also beget healthier behaviors. And America is at the precipice of becoming a whole lot more interested in healthier behaviors. After all, the cost burden shift from the employer to the consumer will only continue. And as consumers assume more and more of those healthcare costs, reports like this will help make the case that supplementation is worth a look as a cost containment tool.

A report funded by a Council for Responsible Nutrition Foundation grant made the case for supplementation as a key component in any healthcare cost reduction strategy. It's not news to those in the industry who already know the health benefits associated with supplementation. But for the consumer media so quick to run a negative headline, this may come as a bit of a shock. 

September 20, 2013

Clif Bar & Co. has been named one of the best workplaces in the United States by Great Place to Work.

EMERYVILLE, Calif. — Clif Bar & Co. has been named one of the best workplaces in the United States by Great Place to Work. The 2013 annual list recognizing exceptional workplace cultures at small- and medium-size companies was published Thursday in Fortune magazine.

September 20, 2013

Only half of the uninsured Americans expected to gain health coverage next year will do so due to a Supreme Court decision that allows states to decide individually whether to expand Medicaid coverage to the poor under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to published reports.

NEW YORK – Only half of the uninsured Americans expected to gain health coverage next year will do so due to a Supreme Court decision that allows states to decide individually whether to expand Medicaid coverage to the poor under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to published reports.

September 19, 2013

CVS Caremark’s MinuteClinic and Baptist Health Care, the largest healthcare network in northwest Florida with a staff of more than 600 physicians, has entered into a clinical affiliation to enhance access to healthcare services in Escambia, Okaloosa and Santa Rosa counties.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. and PENSACOLA, Fla. — CVS Caremark’s MinuteClinic and Baptist Health Care, the largest healthcare network in northwest Florida with a staff of more than 600 physicians, has entered into a clinical affiliation to enhance access to healthcare services in Escambia, Okaloosa and Santa Rosa counties.

September 19, 2013

Rite Aid posted its fourth-consecutive profitable quarter Thursday as it reached a milestone in its store conversions and saw growth in the latest expansion to its loyalty program.

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid posted its fourth-consecutive profitable quarter Thursday as it reached a milestone in its store conversions and saw growth in the latest expansion to its loyalty program.

September 18, 2013

Walgreens announced that it will provide more than 160,000 eligible employees with employer-sponsored health insurance coverage in 2014 through its proprietary “Live Well Benefits Store,” a marketplace that is an outsourced solution through Aon Hewitt Corporate Health Exchange.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Wednesday announced that it will provide more than 160,000 eligible employees with employer-sponsored health insurance coverage in 2014 through its proprietary “Live Well Benefits Store,” a marketplace that is an outsourced solution through Aon Hewitt Corporate Health Exchange. The Walgreens program provides more health coverage choices and an opportunity for most employees to lower their out-of-pocket healthcare costs next year.

September 17, 2013

As the city of Boulder, Colo., continues to clean up from last weekend's record-setting rainfall and subsequent flooding, pharmacists and employees of Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy made it into work to maintain continuity of prescription medicines for area residents.

BOULDER, Colo. — As the city of Boulder, Colo., continues to clean up from last weekend's record-setting rainfall and subsequent flooding, pharmacists and employees of Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy based here made it into work to maintain continuity of prescription medicines for area residents. 

A total of 14.62 inches of rain fell from the afternoon of Sept. 9 through Sept. 13 in Colorado. Boulder was one of the hardest areas hit by the storm.