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MinuteClinic moves forward with Massachusetts plans

BY Antoinette Alexander

MINNEAPOLIS MinuteClinic, a clinic operator owned by CVS Caremark, has applied for its first 10 clinic sites in Massachusetts and expects the opening dates to be in late summer to early fall.

As previously reported by Drug Store News, in January, state health officials approved regulations allowing for limited service medical clinics, marking the end of a long review process that included two public hearings and the submission of hundreds of pages of testimony regarding the regulations.

MinuteClinic stated that it is working with the Massachusetts Department of Health and “is confident that the sites meet the regulatory requirements and will receive approval to move forward.”

The new in-store clinics are planned for CVS stores in Ashland, Beverly, Bridgewater, Danvers, Medford, Medway, Stoughton, Taunton, Tewkesbury and Westford.

The sites are the first of a total of 25 to 30 the company expects to open in Massachusetts by the end of 2008.

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Hallmark exits online flower and gift business

BY Doug Desjardins

KANSAS CITY, Mo. Hallmark is exiting the online gift and flower business, citing a less-than-acceptable return on investment. The move will result in the loss of about 100 jobs at its corporate headquarters and distribution center in Memphis, Tenn., though Hallmark said it would try to find new jobs in the company for those workers.

Hallmark started its online flower business in 2001 and its online and catalog gift and decor business in 2005. The decision will not affect its online business for greeting cards and stationery. A company spokeswoman said Hallmark decided to shutter the flower and gift divisions after determining they “couldn’t guarantee the results we needed.”

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Sam’s Club adds pharmacy to Winterville location

BY Diana Alickaj

BETONVILLE , Ark. Sam’s Club has announced that it will be expanding a North Carolina facility to include a pharmacy. The facility is located at 42040 NE Highway 11 South, and will be celebrating its re-grand opening on March 20.

The event is scheduled to begin with a business appreciation event at 7:00 a.m., which will then be followed by the ribbon cutting ceremony at 9:30 a.m..

The Winterville location is said to include not only a new pharmacy, but also a new Sam’s Club logo on the exterior of the store, and the bakery and cafe have been relocated and updated. Sam’s Club has chosen Kevin Pandya as pharmacy manager and Carol Neubert as staff pharmacist.

The new pharmacy is not limited only to Sam’s Club members, so it will be accessible to the whole public. It has been stocking $4 generic drugs, and promises excellent pricing on its branded drugs as well.

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