Safeway collaborates with pharmacy school on smoking-cessation
One of the ways retailers help consumers realize their full healthcare value is through the kind of outcome management Safeway pharmacists adopted earlier this year to help people quit smoking. Safeway pharmacists have received specialized training — developed by the University of California San Francisco School of Pharmacy — that covers optimal smoking-cessation counseling techniques.
The program developed for Safeway uses a streamlined version of Rx for Change, a tobacco-cessation training program that UCSF pharmacy faculty created to train healthcare providers nationwide. This project fundamentally redesigns how pharmacists work with patients, from simply offering smoking-cessation medications behind a counter to active clinical involvement.
"Pharmacists are often the most accessible healthcare provider for patients within their own communities, but we haven’t maximized their expertise in that setting," stated Joseph Guglielmo, Jr., interim dean of the UCSF School of Pharmacy. "This project offers Safeway customers the full patient care skill set of pharmacists."
Walgreens provides answers to variety of healthcare questions
Everybody’s got questions. Walgreens has answers. With topics covering everything from cold and flu to women’s health, Walgreens has coupled comprehensive health information into a pocket-size pamphlet packed with coupons.
"Information is a place where we can play a critical role in terms of [a] solution set," noted Robert Tompkins, Walgreens GMM health and wellness, front-end services and general merchandise in an interview with DSN last year. "With our store footprint [and] our multichannel platform, we know that customers and patients are looking for healthcare information both from a prevention and treatment standpoint. [And] we think with our 100-year-plus history with our trusted pharmacists, we actually can be a great force for that."
Beyond an endcap of informational brochures headed into the pharmacy space, as seen here, Walgreens offers a deeper health information dive at Walgreens.com. "And at the end of the continuum, we have our trusted pharmacists; in many of our Well Experience [stores], our health guides; and even in 700-plus stores, our Take Care nurse practitioners" Tompkins added. "We offer a full spectrum of healthcare information from the simple to the complex in ways that do really allow [the customer], in a convenient way, to get information where, how and when she wants it."
Walmart partners with Humana to encourage healthier eating
Walmart last fall partnered with HumanaVitality on the Vitality Healthy Food program, where members earn Vitality Points for getting active, losing weight and eating healthier. Those Vitality Points can be redeemed on more than 600,000 rewards, including movie tickets and merchandise.
As part of that, HumanaVitality members have been given a card that collects 5% in savings for select products featuring Walmart’s "Great for You" icon. The savings can be applied to a future Walmart visit.
This is one example of how healthcare payers will partner with retailers on "healthier" purchases going forward. It’s the proverbial carrot incentivizing those healthier purchases. And while this program focuses primarily on food items, vitamins and other value-inducing OTC items can’t be too far behind on what characterizes "Great for You."
"Ultimately we believe that the role will be to make the healthier choice the much more frequently chosen option, and therefore we’re helping Mom fight for the health of her family," stated John Agwunobi, president of health and wellness of Walmart U.S.