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CVS Caremark supporting tornado relief efforts in Oklahoma, Texas

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust, a private foundation created by CVS Caremark, will donate $25,000 to the American Red Cross to support the organization’s tornado relief efforts in Oklahoma and Texas, the company announced on Thursday.  

In addition, the Charitable Trust will match tornado relief donations to the Red Cross from CVS Caremark’s employees up to an additional $25,000, resulting in a potential combined donation from the CVS Caremark Charitable Trust and CVS Caremark colleagues of at least $75,000.

"Our thoughts are with everyone in Oklahoma and Texas who have been affected by the recent devastating tornadoes," stated Larry Merlo, president and CEO of CVS Caremark. "The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust and the American Red Cross have partnered for several years to provide relief to communities impacted by natural disasters. We hope that the contributions of our private foundation and our colleagues will help these communities recover quickly."

CVS/pharmacy also has provided support for tornado relief efforts in Moore, Okla. The company donated more than $5,000 in food, water and personal care products to Feed the Children, an Oklahoma City-based nonprofit organization. Feed the Children has launched a campaign to aid tornado victims in the town of Moore.

Moore is home to two CVS/pharmacy stores and a MinuteClinic inside one of the CVS stores. The stores are open and serving the prescription and emergency supplies needs of the community. The CVS/pharmacy on SW 19th Street in Moore will remain open 24-hours-a-day to serve customers. The MinuteClinic also is open and staffed by nurse practitioners who are providing critically-needed healthcare services in the community, such as tetanus shots and dressing changes.

"The dedication of our colleagues who live and work in Moore to keep our locations open, along with our many other colleagues from nearby markets who are providing assistance in this community, is an inspiring realization of our organization’s purpose to help people on their path to better health," Merlo said.
 

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Ariz. pharmacist provides voice of Luke Skywalker in Navajo-dubbed ‘Star Wars’

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — You might remember back in January 2011, when DSN profiled Terry Teller, a pharmacist from Lukachukai, Ariz., who uses his Navajo-language skills when working with patients. Now, according to published reports, he can add "Jedi Knight" to his resume.

Teller, a fluent speaker of Navajo who has made a series of videos of himself speaking the language on YouTube and who divides his time as a pharmacist at an Indian Health Services clinic and as a weekend-relief pharmacist at a nearby Walmart pharmacy, will be the voice of Luke Skywalker in the upcoming Navajo-dubbed version of "Star Wars: Episode IV."

The Navajo Times reported that recording for the main roles of the movie took place between May 13 and May 20, and the movie will be screened at the Navajo Nation Museum on July 3.

Navajo, known to speakers as Diné bizaad, is the most commonly spoken Native American language in the United States, with an estimated 170,000 speakers, mostly in Arizona and New Mexico, according to the Census. 

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More physicians ‘warehousing’ patients as they await new hepatitis C treatments

BY Alaric DeArment

EXTON, Pa. — In anticipation of new treatments for hepatitis C, a growing number of physicians have begun intentionally delaying treatment for patients, according to a new study.

The study, by BioTrends Research Group, looked at the practice, known as "warehousing," finding that 1-in-5 surveyed gastroenterologists, hepatologists and infectious disease specialists had done so in the past six months, compared with six months ago, when the figure was 6%. The physicians are waiting for a new generation of treatments for hepatitis C that don’t use proteins known as interferons.

"The protease inhibitors — Vertex’s Incivek (telaprevir) and Merck’s Victrelis (boceprivir) — were very important advances in the management of HCV infections," BioTrends associate director Lynn Price said. "However, there is still a clear unmet need for alternative HCV therapies and the recent [new drug application] filings for [Janssen and Medivir’s] simeprevir and [Gilead Sciences’] sofosbuvir have physicians hopeful for new treatment options that are highly efficacious and more tolerable than the currently available protease inhibitors."

 

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