HEALTH

GSK, Walgreens team up on Sponsorship to Quit, a free online quit-smoking gamification program

BY Michael Johnsen

PARSIPPANY, N.J. — GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare and Walgreens on Monday teamed up to launch Sponsorship to Quit, a free online quit-smoking gamification program that smokers can personalize with customized tools and tips during their journey to quit. 

"People are frequently reminded of the benefits related to quitting smoking, but adopting healthier habits can be challenging," stated Robert Tompkins, group VP and general merchandising manager for health and wellness at Walgreens. "Highlighting the positive and happy moments that can result from quitting could be that extra motivation needed to pursue a smoke-free lifestyle," he said. "We hope #STQuit inspires people to make a difference in their lives, and Sponsorship to Quit encourages results with a tailored plan that provides support and motivation throughout the quit journey."

After completing an online consultation, a smoker can access tools that help track successes and slip ups, earn badges, celebrate milestones and access expert information and tips around the clock. Smokers receive a tailored quit plan that offers help in selecting the right nicotine replacement therapy and a form and strength that best matches their needs, like nicotine gum, lozenges or patches. 

Smokers can sign-up to receive a free quit kit upon registration, a quit journal and an official quitter card, a physical reminder of smokers’ commitment to quit.

To help encourage a healthier lifestyle, Sponsorship to Quit is asking America to take to social media and share their top reason for quitting smoking in 2014, using the hashtag #STQuit. Walgreens and GSK will reveal the top 10 responses in February. The No. 1 "quitspiration" will inspire a $10,000 donation to a related Walgreens and GSK-selected charity.

 

 

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HEALTH

Six health plans across Arizona and Texas to provide over-the-counter benefits through Medagate

BY Michael Johnsen

ATLANTA — InComm, a leading prepaid product and transaction services company, on Monday announced that six health plans across Arizona and Texas will be providing over-the-counter benefits through Medagate, InComm’s healthcare platform. 

"Our partnership with these leading Arizona and Texas health plans will create more convenient services for their members, but also allow retailers and health plans to collaborate on wellness initiatives," David Vielehr, VP InComm said. "Over the last two years we have seen a dramatic expansion of the benefits we provide seniors. We look forward to bringing our network of retailers and health plans to Arizona and Texas."

Many Medicare Advantage plan members do not take advantage of OTC Medicare benefits because they must either pay out-of-pocket for OTC items and seek reimbursement, or order online via a catalog and wait up to a week to receive OTC items, InComm noted. The OTCNetwork Card functions like a conventional prepaid card but restricts usage to the purchase of OTC Medicare eligible items for use in self care.

Participating retail partners include CVS/pharmacy, Dollar General, Family Dollar, HEB, Rite Aid and Walgreens. Participating health plans include University of Arizona Health Plans, Phoenix Health Plans and Valley Baptist Health Plans. 

Since 2012, Medagate has worked with more than 25 health plans serving more than 400,000 health plan members and provided eligible seniors with approximately $100 million in OTC benefits at the point of sale, InComm stated. 

 

 

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H-E-B opens 2014 annual Slim Down Showdown challenge to all consumers

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN ANTONIO — H-E-B is opening its annual Slim Down Showdown challenge to all Texans this year, according to published reports. 

Registration for the at-home challenge is open through Jan. 17. Those who participate and log in eight weeks of continuous activity will be eligible to win up to $1,000 in H-E-B gift cards.

H-E-B is opening the contest with a two-week, in-store Start Fresh Fest with demonstrations of quick-to-make healthy meals.

 

 

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