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Rite Aid offers new Medicare Part D plan with Symphonix

BY Alaric DeArment

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid will help elderly people and their caregivers prepare for the annual Medicare Part D enrollment starting in two weeks, the drug store chain said Tuesday.

Rite Aid said its stores around the country would offer Medicare Advisor to help Medicare beneficiaries and caregivers find the plan that suits them best starting on Oct. 15.

"We know that selecting the right prescription insurance converge can be overwhelming, and that’s why Rite Aid is committed to offering a valuable resource to help our customers make the best decision based on their prescription needs," Rite Aid EVP pharmacy Robert Thompson said. "Whether they are eligible for Medicare Part D coverage for the first time or reviewing their current elections, Rite Aid encourages all customers making this important healthcare decision to take advantage of Rite Aid’s free Medicare Advisor comparison tool with the help of their Rite Aid pharmacist or online at riteaid.com."

Plans available will include a new plan from Symphonix Health Insurance, called Symphonix Rite Aid Value Rx (PDP). The plan is designed to appeal to value-conscious customers, and Rite Aid will be the preferred pharmacy provider. The plan includes $1 co-pays for select generic drugs and a monthly premium described as competitive, as well as lower co-pays at Rite Aid pharmacies. The plan is available everywhere Rite Aid operates except Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, Virginia and West Virginia. Rite Aid is also a preferred pharmacy provider in Medicare Part D plans offered by WellPoint affiliates and Express Scripts Medicare (PDP), as well as region-specific plans.

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Walmart Foundation appoints new president

BY Vivian Gomez

The Walmart Foundation has appointed Kathleen McLaughlin as its president, effective Oct. 15. In addition to leading corporate giving, she will have responsibility for the company’s global sustainability, women’s economic empowerment initiatives and healthier food initiatives.

McLaughlin, previously a senior partner at global consulting firm McKinsey & Company, is a dual American-Canadian citizen and was based in Toronto.

"At Walmart we feel a responsibility to lead on some of the biggest global challenges of our time," said Mike Duke, Walmart president and CEO. "We are using the size, scale and strengths of our business to make a positive impact in these areas and the Walmart Foundation plays a major strategic role in making this model work. Kathleen has a personal passion for making a difference on social issues and the business expertise to help successfully develop and implement real, long-term solutions."

McLaughlin most recently led McKinsey’s Social Innovation Practice, where she worked with a range of businesses, NGOs and development agencies worldwide. Examples of her work in this area include developing strategy and revamping the operating models of major foundations and development organizations; enhancing sustainability of the food chain working with a global consortium of food growers, manufacturers, distributors and retailers on issues such as access to market for small growers and seafood sustainability; and improving delivery of maternal and HIV/AIDS health care in Africa, working with international donors, local governments and NGOs.

McLaughlin also has deep experience in retail, having led more than 75 engagements with retail clients around the world. Specific areas of focus include international strategy, category management, operational efficiency, pricing/promotions, digital marketing, format renewal and post-merger management.

"Kathleen has been at the forefront of innovative public-private partnerships that drive development in some of the poorest parts of the world," said Dan Bartlett, EVP of Walmart corporate affairs. "She has also worked closely with grocers, department stores, drugstore chains and other retailers to improve their business strategy and overall performance. It is this rare combination of knowledge and experience that will enable her to have a unique impact on our business and on the communities we serve around the world."

McLaughlin also recently completed 10 years of service on the board of the Toronto Community Foundation, including chairing the Community Initiatives Committee that oversaw initiatives and grant-making to Toronto NGOs addressing poverty, hunger, housing and immigrant integration issues.

She, her husband, Tim Costigan, and their three children will be relocating to northwest Arkansas.

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McKesson names industry veterans Chris Dimos, Melanie Nallicheri to SVP roles

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN FRANCISCO — Pharmacy veteran Chris Dimos has joined McKesson as SVP corporate strategy and business development, reporting to Brian Tyler, McKesson EVP corporate strategy and business development, DSN has learned. Also joining McKesson is Melanie Nallicheri as SVP McKesson Distribution Solutions. Nallicheri will similarly report to Tyler. 

Dimos comes to McKesson from Supervalu, where he was president of pharmacy operations. In addition to pharmacy, Dimos was responsbile for health, general merchandise and non-food grocery categories. Prior to Supervalu, Dimos served as VP pharmacy services with Albertsons. 

Dimos earned his bachelor degree in pharmacy at Purdue University and his masters degree from Indiana University. 

Nallicheri comes to McKesson from Geron Corp., where she was SVP corporate development since 2011. Before Geron, Nallicheri was a partner at Booz and Co. for 18 years.  

Nollicheri earned her MBA from Columbia Business School.

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