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Safeway employees donated more than 1 million volunteer hours in 2012

BY Michael Johnsen

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway on Thursday announced that its employees gave more than 1 million hours of volunteer service to their neighborhoods and communities in 2012 – surpassing the company’s goal for the second consecutive year and reinforcing a long-standing culture of volunteerism.

"We are proud of and thankful for our employees who chose to make a difference in their community in 2012," stated Larree Renda, Safeway EVP and chair of The Safeway Foundation. "The response and gratitude we have received from charities and other organizations that benefit from our employees’ volunteer efforts show we are making a visible and tangible impact in communities we serve.

2012 marks the second year Safeway’s 175,000 employees contributed more than 1 million hours of volunteer service. While volunteerism had long been part of Safeway’s culture, the company undertook a formal initiative in 2010 to build on efforts already underway and assist employees who wanted to find activities and organizations that best suit their interests and talents.

Through its volunteer initiative, Safeway set out to encourage additional volunteer efforts and recognize employees who give a significant amount of time to various causes. Through a partnership with Volunteer Match, an organization that provides businesses with Web-based solutions to facilitate and track volunteer engagement at local and national levels, Safeway employees can find volunteer opportunities in their communities that meet their specific interests, talents and availability.

Examples of volunteer activities performed by Safeway employees include participating in charity half-marathons/walkathons, coaching little league sports teams, leading park and marine cleanup days, preparing hot meals at food pantries, helping the needy obtain social services and remodeling homes for people with disabilities.

 

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Study: Misconceptions about antibiotics linked to poor health literacy levels in Latino population

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — A recent study found that poor heath literacy among Latino parents is associated with incorrect beliefs on the proper use of antibiotics, particularly for upper respiratory infections, which can lead to an increase in antimicrobial resistance.

Conducted in the predominantly Hispanic neighborhoods of upper Manhattan where “bodegas” offer easy access to unregulated antibiotics, the study by researchers at the Columbia University School of Nursing and Department of Pediatrics found that 1-out-of-3 participants had poor health literacy when measured by reading comprehension, and even lower scores when measured by numerical proficiency. In addition, those with inadequate health literacy levels held incorrect beliefs about the use of antibiotics.

Latinos are more likely to take antibiotics without a prescription, previous research has shown, since many have emigrated from countries where it is common to buy antibiotics over the counter without a prescription, according to the study. URIs are caused by viral infections and are not responsive to antibiotics, which are used to treat bacteria-borne illness.

Evidence suggests that Latino parents with limited English proficiency are more likely to have inadequate health literacy. In addition, Latino parents have been shown to be significantly more likely to expect antibiotic treatment for a child in comparison with non-Hispanic white parents, according to the study.

 “Injudicious use of antibiotics, including antimicrobial treatment of viral URI in pediatric settings, has contributed to the public health threat of antimicrobial resistance,” wrote the study’s lead author Ann-Margaret Dunn-Navarra of the Columbia University School of Nursing. "Enhanced parent education on appropriate antibiotic treatment is critical if the health disparities in children of minority families are going to be corrected.”

 

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New gel makes toilet paper emulate wet wipes, manufacturer says

BY Alaric DeArment

CANTON, Mass. — A new product is designed to make toilet paper mimic wet wipes while being easier to flush.

Fresh Dab, introduced by a company of the same name, is a gel applied to toilet paper, which the company said would allow for better removal of residue than toilet paper alone, while also allowing toilet paper to break down as it normally would, unlike wet wipes that can clog sewage and septic systems.

The gel is made from natural ingredients often used to treat and clean skin, such as aloe vera, witch hazel, willow and rooibos.

The gel is available at a list price of $7.99 in 8-oz. bottles, each containing up to 200 dabs.

 

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