PHARMACY

iPhones could become primary mobile device for medical information, study finds

BY Alaric DeArment

IRVINE, Calif. — The number of consumers using iPhones to gather medical information has grown by 94% since 2011, according to a new study by online medical publishing company The Patient’s Guide.

The study, based on engagement-behavior data on 12 million visitors to the site over two years, also found that the iPhone topped the list of mobile devices used to seek medical information online, accounting for 41% of total mobile traffic this year; the company predicts that the iPhone will surpass the desktop computer as the primary device for health information by 2014.

"Knowing that mobile activity has grown significantly over the past three years, we have paid close attention to the trends and patterns shaping the way consumers behave in this space," The Patient’s Guide co-founder and CEO Jasson Gilmore said. "We have seen a sea change in the way consumers use mobile devices to research medical topics online. Physicians are now telling us it’s common to see a patient who’s reading questions from their iPhones."


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PHARMACY

CVS/pharmacy offering new card designs, customized smartphone cases for holiday season

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS/pharmacy is ready for the holiday season with an array of new offerings for holiday shoppers, including 1,000 greeting card designs and new personalized smartphone and tablet cases.

"CVS/pharmacy Photo Centers offer high-quality products that consumers want, while providing convenience and simplicity that make creating the items using personal photos fun and easy," stated Rob Price, SVP marketing and chief marketing officer for CVS/pharmacy. "From a newer product like our personalized phone and tablet cases, to traditional selections including an ornament, photo book, cards and more, CVS/pharmacy Photo has what customers need to develop one-of-a-kind keepsakes."

1,000+ New Cards & Stationery
Designing the perfect holiday cards year after year can be a challenge. CVS.com/photo offers convenience to consumers looking to create cards, while also providing an array of style options with more than 1,000 cards to choose from, starting as low as 65 cents. Finding the cards online is simple, as cards are organized by holiday, and then broken down further to distinguish new cards from the most popular card selections. Cards are available in a variety of sizes and format options.

Personalized Smartphone and Tablet Cases
Styles range from sleek cases to more durable options and customers can be as creative as they like while selecting different format styles, background colors, collage layouts and more. Plus, users can upload photos from their cameras, as well as favorite shots from Facebook or Instagram. Cases are available for the newly launched iPhone 5 — including other iPhone models — iPod, Blackberry, Samsung, Kindle Fire and more, and start at $34.99.

Canvas Prints
Canvas prints are an option for consumers looking to redecorate for the New Year or add some unexpected conversation pieces for holiday parties. CVS/pharmacy photo wall decor are mounted on canvases that have a protective finish to ensure they are easy to clean and sturdy to hang. There are options for spaces big and small, including 5×7 tabletop, 8×10 tabletop, 11×14, 12×18, 16×20, 16×24 and 20×30.  

In addition to cards, cases and canvas prints, CVS/pharmacy has an array of other products from blankets, ornaments, photo books and more. Shoppers are encouraged to order photo gifts online by Dec. 15 to receive their gifts in time for Christmas (i.e., by December 23). Free ship-to-store options are also available for most photo gifts and home decor options, the company stated.

 

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QS/1, CoverMyMeds partner on prior authorization automation

BY Alaric DeArment

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Pharmacy technology provider QS/1 has entered a contract with CoverMyMeds to automate a process often required by insurers to dispense specialty drugs.

QS/1 said it entered a partnership with CoverMyMeds to automate the prior-authorization process, required for 90% of specialty drugs on the market.

"A pharmacist can spend a lot of time cutting through the red tape to get these prescriptions filled," QS/1 pharmacy market analyst John Frady said. "CoverMyMeds helps cut down on that work load by automating the process."

CoverMyMeds allows physicians and pharmacists complete prior authorization and other insurance coverage determination forms for any drug and most drug plans, developing online and phone-based systems that make the process faster and easier.

"The best thing about this plan is, it doesn’t cost the pharmacies a penny to use," Frady said.


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