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CVS Caremark officially announces opening of first MinuteClinic in Hawaii

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark’s MinuteClinic on Thursday officially announced the opening of its first walk-in medical clinic in Hawaii at the Longs Drug store on South King Street in Honolulu near the University of Hawaii, Manoa.

It is the first of seven MinuteClinic locations to open inside select Longs Drug stores on Oahu in the next two weeks. Additional clinics will serve patients in Aiea, Hawaii Kai, Kailua, Kaneohe, Kapolei and Waialae, the company stated.

To celebrate the opening, Hawaii Senate President Donna Mercado Kim, Hawaii House of Representatives Health Committee Chair Della Au Belatti and City and County of Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell will join MinuteClinic and Longs Drug officials at Thursday’s grand opening event that includes a traditional maile lei untying and blessing ceremony.

Longs Drug stores are owned and operated by CVS/pharmacy. MinuteClinic chief medical officer Nancy Gagliano said Hawaii’s Longs locations are an important milestone in MinuteClinic’s national expansion plan to open 150 clinics nationwide in 2013.

"We are thrilled to bring MinuteClinic to Hawaii – our first new state in five years and the first of three new states in 2013," stated Gagliano.  "We believe MinuteClinic can be part of the solution to help broaden access to high quality, convenient and affordable healthcare services on Oahu."

CVS Caremark is the exclusive provider of PBM services for HMSA, Hawaii’s Blue Cross Blue Shield Association licensee. Since the relationship between CVS Caremark and HMSA began in January 2013, HMSA has been a strong advocate for bringing MinuteClinic to Hawaii.

"The opening of MinuteClinic locations in Hawaii is another concrete example of the commitment CVS Caremark has to both our membership and the community at large," stated Michael Stollar, HMSA SVP of integrated health development. "We are excited to welcome MinuteClinic to the islands and believe their convenient services such as vaccinations, screenings and monitoring of chronic conditions such as diabetes, can help support primary care providers in Hawaii in their mission to keep their patients healthy."

MinuteClinic is committed to helping patients find a medical home, and believes it can play a complementary role as part of the medical home team, according to Gagliano.

"About 50% of our visits occur on evenings, weekends and holidays when patients may not be able to get an appointment with their primary care provider," stated Gagliano. "And about half of the patients we see, do not have a physician, due in large part to the severe shortage of primary care doctors in the U.S. We expect the same patterns in Hawaii."

Patients who visit MinuteClinic without a PCP are provided a list of physicians in the area who are accepting new patients, Gagliano said.


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Former Giant-Landover president joins Schnucks

BY Alaric DeArment

ST. LOUIS — The former president of Giant Food of Landover, Md., has joined Schnuck Markets as EVP and chief strategy officer, Schnucks said Thursday.

The St. Louis-based supermarket chain announced that it had hired Anthony Hucker, who resigned earlier this month as president of Giant-Landover, a chain owned by Ahold USA that runs 169 stores in the District of Columbia and surrounding areas. Formerly Walmart’s corporate VP and head of the Walmart Express division, Hucker was named president of Giant-Landover two years ago this month.

"Anthony is a tremendous talent who shares our values; he’s customer-focused and a true merchant in every sense," Schnucks chairman and CEO Scott Schnuck said. "We expect that he will add velocity to efforts that will ensure Schnucks’ continued growth and success."

 

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H-E-B pledges not to reduce part-time hours as Affordable Care Act approaches

BY Michael Johnsen

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. 

Other employers have been cutting part-time hours in an effort to avoid having to pay for health benefits under the Affordable Care Act, the report noted. 

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