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Target celebrates 20-year St. Jude’s partnership with Bullseye Bash

BY Gina Acosta

MINNEAPOLIS — Target is celebrating 20 years of partnership efforts with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which helps save the lives of children battling cancer and other life-threatening diseases. 

The sponsorship celebration culminated last week with Target’s holiday Bullseye Bash, which was attended by Target’s chairman and CEO, Brian Cornell, and other Target leaders. Hundreds of patients and their families had a chance to enjoy a variety of holiday-themed activities, including Nutcracker-inspired performances featuring a cast of characters. They also had an opportunity to meet Target’s dog mascot, Bullseye. Click here for more on Target’s Bullseye Bash.

Target’s relationship with St. Jude began in 1996 with a commitment to design and build Target House, the hospital’s long-term housing facility that gives patients and families a home-away-from-home while undergoing treatment. Since opening in 1999, Target House has hosted more than 4,500 families from 45 states and 47 countries and territories. While accommodating up to 98 families at a time, each apartment is fully furnished with products donated by Target and vendor partners. Staying true to the mission of St. Jude, none of these families ever receive a bill for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.

Beyond Target House, Target has donated millions of dollars throughout the years to help fuel research at St. Jude. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since it opened more than 50 years ago.

“We’re proud of Target’s longtime partnership with St. Jude and are honored to have helped the incredible patients and families at St. Jude over the past 20 years,” said Laysha Ward, chief corporate social responsibility officer, Target. “I visit Target House every year – the families that I’ve met and the hope and resilience I see in these children is awe-inspiring. On behalf of Target, I want to extend a huge thank you to the St. Jude team and all of the Target partners and volunteers across the country who have dedicated countless hours and financial resources to help St. Jude achieve their mission of saving lives and finding cures.”

 

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Automated pharmacy notifications can make the difference in advance of natural disasters

BY Brian Berk

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — Automated pharmacy notifications can provide the necessary push to encourage patients with chronic conditions to refill medications prior to a forecasted natural disaster, according to new research conducted by the CVS Health Research Institute and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. The study also concluded public-private partnerships can facilitate timely pharmacy outreach as part of broader community-based natural disaster planning. 

"Emergency departments and medical responders can be overwhelmed by the number of people seeking medical care after a disaster simply because they ran out of their daily medications and couldn't reach a pharmacy due to impassable streets and business closures," said Dr. Nicole Lurie, HHS assistant secretary for Preparedness and Response. "The number of people who need medications for chronic conditions continues to rise, and communities across the country need solutions that can help them stay healthy, even in a disaster situation. This study demonstrated how powerful public-private partnerships can be in providing solutions that can protect health for residents and whole communities."

The study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, had researchers compare medication fill rates of more than 2 million patients who were contacted by CVS Pharmacy in advance of a storm to a randomly assigned control group of patients of the same stores who received no outreach. The research revealed that those who received outreach prior to the storm were 9% more likely to refill their medications within the 48 hours after receiving the notification and before the storm impacted the region.

"Ensuring our patients have their medications available to them is one of our top priorities, and this research highlights how proactive outreach to patients before a natural disaster can encourage timely medication refills which may help ensure continuity of care and avoid adverse health events due to inadequate medication supply," said Kevin Hourican, EVP, Pharmacy Services and Supply Chain, CVS Health. "Operationally, we have the infrastructure in place at all of our more than 9,600 CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide to facilitate this type of proactive outreach in advance of forecasted weather events."

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CVS encourages flu shots during National Influenza Vaccination Week

BY Brian Berk

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — It’s not too late to get a flu shot.

CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic are encouraging consumers to get their flu shot during the week of Dec. 4-10, which is The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Influenza Vaccination Week. Vaccination Week, established by the CDC in 2005, is intended to emphasize the importance of getting vaccinated as the holiday season begins.

"National Influenza Vaccination Week is a great reminder that the flu virus doesn't take the holidays off and families should make sure they're protected by getting vaccinated," said Papatya Tankut, R.Ph., VP of pharmacy affairs at CVS Health. "CVS Pharmacy understands that families' schedules are packed with holiday to-dos this time of year, and that's why we make getting the flu shot convenient."

A CVS Health survey concluded that two in five Americans make multiple trips to get their entire household vaccinated. It also revealed that nearly two of every three employed Americans (64%) would still go to work even if they were feeling ill with flu-like symptoms.

"With many people choosing to go to work even when they're experiencing flu-like symptoms, it's vital to take all precautions necessary to avoid getting sick," said Angela Patterson, DNP, FNP-BC, NEA-BC, chief nurse practitioner officer at MinuteClinic. "Getting a flu shot is the most effective way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the flu and the potentially serious effects of influenza infection."

The flu vaccine is considered a preventive service under the Affordable Care Act, and is fully covered and available at no cost through most insurance plans. In addition, customers will receive a 20-percent off CVS Pharmacy Shopping Pass when they get a flu shot at CVS Pharmacy or MinuteClinic. Patients who receive a flu shot at CVS Pharmacy or MinuteClinic locations inside select Target stores will receive a $5 Target GiftCard.

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