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Views of economy improve, but gloom persists, Nielsen study finds

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — More than half of consumers around the world say the world is in an economic recession, according to a new study by Nielsen.

According to the Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions, 71% of North Americans said they were in a recession in the fourth-quarter of 2012, but this represented a drop in 15 percentage points from the fourth-quarter of 2011, representing the largest drop in negative sentiments about the economy of any area.

"North America is slowly, but steadily heading in the right direction," said Venkatesh Bala, chief economist at Nielsen’s Cambridge Group division. "Compared with a year ago, North America showed progress toward recovery with a six-point year-on-year consumer confidence increase, driven mainly by a three-point increase in a positive job outlook, up from 37% in [fourth-quarter] 2011 to 40% in [fourth-quarter] 2012. With continued weakness in Europe and uneven growth in Asia, it may well be that with a brighter job market, the U.S. serves as the critical engine of improved global economic activity in 2013."

Nevertheless, while sentiments in North America had seen significant improvement, bad feelings about the economy were still lower in Asia and Latin America, with 48% and 50% of respondents in those respective areas saying the economy was in recession; those figures represented declines of four and three percentage points compared with third-quarter 2012, respectively. But Europeans’ view was still dimmer than North Americans’, with 75% saying they were in recession, unchanged since the third-quarter, while 73% of people in the Middle East and Africa said they were in recession, an increase of one percentage point over third-quarter 2012.


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AccentHealth acquires Everwell waiting room television network

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — AccentHealth on Thursday announced it has purchased the Everwell waiting room television network, a division of MediVista Media. The deal follows AccentHealth’s recent acquisition of Havas Impact’s health panel business, a purchase that doubled AccentHealth’s national footprint. 

“We are pleased to add Everwell’s offices to our waiting room television network,” stated John Curbishley, EVP, business and product development AccentHealth. “We look forward to working with our new physician office partners to introduce AccentHealth’s award winning programming service.” 

“National brand advertisers are increasingly taking advantage of the unique targeting and measurability features of AccentHealth’s networks,” commented Dan Stone, CEO of AccentHealth, “By expanding our national footprint we can become an even more integral part of their media plans.”

Following these two acquisitions, AccentHealth now provides patient education in more than 30,000 locations nationwide, serving over 66,000 medical practitioners and their patients.

MediVista Media will continue to operate its existing Everwell content business producing and distributing health video programming across multiple platforms.


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MinuteClinic, Greenville Hospital System form clinical affiliation

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. and GREENVILLE, S.C. — MinuteClinic and Greenville Hospital System — South Carolina’s largest health system, with five medical campuses, outpatient and specialty centers and a large network of physician practices — have entered into a clinical affiliation to enhance access to healthcare services in upstate South Carolina.

MinuteClinic has 11 walk-in medical inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in the Upstate. The agreement includes locations throughout the Upstate, including Greenville, Simpsonville, Spartanburg, Anderson, Clemson and surrounding communities. Additional locations in Spartanburg and Travelers Rest are expected to open in the spring.

The clinical affiliation encourages collaboration among GHS and MinuteClinic providers to improve coordination of care for patients seen at these locations. GHS will provide the required physician supervision for nurse practitioners at MinuteClinic locations. GHS, an academic medical center, will also help assist with the continuing education needs of the nurse practitioners.

"Part of providing great care is providing the right level of care at times that work for our patients," stated Angelo Sinopoli, GHS’ VP clinical integration and chief medical officer. "Innovations like MinuteClinic and our popular MD360 Convenient Care, which has extended physician hours and accepts walk-in patients, are important elements of an accessible, affordable care continuum."

MinuteClinic and GHS will begin to work toward fully integrating electronic medical record systems to streamline communication around all aspects of each individual’s care. With patient permission, MinuteClinic will electronically share medical histories and visit summaries with other GHS locations. In the meantime, MinuteClinic will continue its standard practice of sending patient visit summaries to primary care providers via fax or mail, typically within 24 hours. 


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