HEALTH

CRN’s new microsite offers resources about nurse practitioners

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — The Council for Responsible Nutrition earlier this week announced the launch of a microsite as part of its joint education campaign with the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Foundation.

The new microsite, which will be available via the CRN website, is a hub for resources and information about nurse practitioners in general, as well as their attitudes about and usage of dietary supplements, the association stated.

“This microsite will provide information showcasing the important role that nurse practitioners and dietary supplements play as part of a comprehensive approach to wellness,” commented Judy Blatman, CRN SVP communications.“It will allow us to have a central location to house information and news related to this effort. As a healthcare practitioner group, nurse practitioners are growing in numbers, and as more consumers learn about the value of nurse practitioners, their influence will continue to grow as well.”

The microsite additions will be comprised of fact sheets and statistics about nurse practitioners, as well as joint press releases from the organizations. It will have a different feel than CRN’s primary website, with a unique layout and format. The microsite can be accessed by visiting CRNusa.org/AANPF.

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Alka-Seltzer announces Facebook contest winner

BY Michael Johnsen

MORRISTOWN, N.J. — Bayer Consumer Care on Friday announced that Frank Garske of California is the grand prize winner of the Alka-Seltzer Said/Heard Mishaps Contest on Facebook.

As the winner, Garske won a trip to New York to star in an Alka-Seltzer online video featuring his winning entry. The online video, in which Garske was misinterpreted as naming an executive’s internal opinion piece “The Barren Mind” as opposed to “And Bear in Mind,” premiered today on the Alka-Seltzer Facebook page. "While funny now, at the time, my miscommunication mishap was pretty stressful,” Garske said. “It’s great to know that when stress gives you heartburn with headache, Alka-Seltzer makes you feel better quickly.”

While similar miscommunications often can be humorous, they also can lead to stress, and stress may give you heartburn or an upset stomach with headache. That’s why Alka-Seltzer Original — the stomach, heartburn and pain remedy synonymous with fast relief — launched the Said/Heard Mishaps Contest on Facebook, according to the company.

The contest gave entrants the opportunity to share their miscommunication experiences for a chance to win big.

To see the winning video, visit Facebook.com/Alka-Seltzer.

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Akorn acquires AVR in $26 million deal

BY Michael Johnsen

LAKE FOREST, Ill. — Akorn, a niche generic pharmaceutical company, earlier this week entered into an agreement to acquire Advanced Vision Research, an over-the-counter ophthalmic company that promotes eye care products under the TheraTears and MacuTrition brands.

“AVR is a great strategic platform to expand into the OTC eye care market,” stated Akorn CEO Raj Rai. “With the acquisition, we can add value in future growth, as we have an existing sales infrastructure that markets products to ophthalmologists, optometrists and retailers nationwide complementing AVR’s sales initiatives.”

In 2010, AVR generated sales of $20 million, which consisted of domestic sales through major retail chains and sales in 20 countries across five continents. Akorn also announced plans to launch a new consumer health division to enter the $1.2 billion OTC eye care market, pending the acquisition of AVR. The company plans to further expand by licensing new products and developing private-label eye care products for major retailers.

Akorn tapped Bruce Kutinsky to lead its newly formed consumer health division as president. Prior to joining Akorn in 2010, Kutinsky served as VP strategic solutions at Walgreens. Kutinsky also has held various senior management positions at Option Care, which was acquired by Walgreens in 2007. Kutinsky started his career as a retail pharmacist and has a doctor of pharmacy degree from the University of Michigan.

The deal was valued at $26 million in cash, Akorn reported.

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