PHARMACY

CVS offers health screenings, pharmacist Facebook chat for American Heart Month

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — Recognizing that cardiovascular disease affects about 80 million people in the United States and is the No. 1 killer of Americans, CVS/pharmacy announced on Thursday that it is providing several free services, educational information and special product offers during February’s American Heart Month.

As part of its new Project Health wellness and free health screenings program, CVS/pharmacy will provide free blood pressure, cholesterol, body mass index and osteoporosis screenings every weekday in February from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at select CVS/pharmacy locations in Atlanta; Chicago; Dallas-Fort Worth; Detroit; Houston; Los Angeles; Miami; New York; Philadelphia; Washington, D.C.; and Puerto Rico.

As previously reported by Drug Store News, CVS/pharmacy’s Project Health will deliver more than $21 million worth of free health screenings to multicultural communities this year to help prevent disease through early detection. More than 1,000 Project Health events will be held during five disease-specific national health awareness months, including Heart Health Month.

To further help patients by answering their questions about heart health and managing cardiovascular disease, CVS/pharmacy will host a live Facebook chat with a CVS pharmacist on Feb. 15 from noon to 1:30 p.m. The live online event will be free and open to the public, and can be accessed by logging on to the CVS/pharmacy Facebook page.

"As a pharmacy innovation company, we are pleased to provide free resources, such as Project Health screenings and an online pharmacist chat, to help people on their path to better health during American Heart Month," stated Papatya Tankut, VP pharmacy professional services at CVS/pharmacy. "In addition to these programs, CVS pharmacists are always available to support their patients’ heart health by counseling them on ways to lower prescriptions costs, manage their medications and improve medication adherence in order to achieve better health outcomes."

In further recognition of American Heart Month, CVS/pharmacy will provide healthy savings and tips through its 2012 Heart Smart Guide, which is available at select locations across the United States in February. The guide contains information about recognizing the signs of a heart attack, monitoring your blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar and weight, and advice on eating smart and staying active. It also features savings offers on heart-healthy products available at CVS/pharmacy.

Even more product savings are available through CVS/pharmacy’s ExtraCare Advantage for Diabetes program. Members will receive an at-home mailing in February that contains more than $100 in savings on diabetic and heart-health products at CVS/pharmacy. ExtraCare Advantage for Diabetes helps patients with diabetes keep costs down on an ongoing basis throughout the year with discounts on hundreds of supplies to help them successfully manage their condition.

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PHARMACY

Rite Aid immunizations garner award

BY Alaric DeArment

CAMP HILL, Pa. — A retail pharmacy chain’s efforts to immunize customers have won recognition from an organization of the country’s pharmacists.

Rite Aid won the American Pharmacists Association’s Immunization Champion Award in the national corporation and institution category, the chain said Thursday.

Rite Aid said it was recognized for its comprehensive program that included using the APhA Immunization Certificate Training Program to train more than 11,000 of its pharmacists to administer vaccines to patients. The company reported more than 1.4 million flu shots in its December 2011 analyst call, more than double 2010’s total.

"Rite Aid made a companywide commitment to boosting public immunization rates for flu and other vaccine-preventable diseases," Rite Aid EVP Robert Thompson said. "It’s an honor to be recognized by our peers, [the] American Pharmacists Association, for our efforts."

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Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance extended to Safeway stores in select markets

BY Allison Cerra

MINNETONKA, Minn. — Another retailer has joined the UnitedHealth Group’s Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance, an initiative designed to help address the growing epidemic of prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes.

UnitedHealth Group said Safeway now is offering the DPCA’s diabetes control program at stores located in Tucson, Ariz., and eventually will extend the program to include Seattle-area stores. In-store pharmacists in select Safeway locations will conduct blood-glucose, cholesterol and blood-pressure testing services for program participants and provide them with on-the-spot results, enabling patients to get immediate feedback on their status or progress in managing their diabetes.

Other participating retailers include Winn-Dixie, Walgreens, Albertsons and Kroger, along with UnitedHealth Group, the Y and Novo Nordisk.

“Safeway continues to be a leader in advancing innovative solutions to help our customers live healthier lives, and providing tools and services to prevent disease,” Safeway SVP pharmacy, health and wellness Darren Singer said. “Diabetes continues to take a devastating toll on families and communities, and through Safeway’s participation in the DPCA, we are helping provide greater access to care for our customers and helping them manage and take control of this disease.”


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