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Walgreens BTS survey: Cartoon-themed brands are trending

BY Michael Johnsen

DEERFIELD, Ill. — According to a Walgreens back-to-school survey released Tuesday, parents of school-age children report a significant number are fans of cartoon brands well into high school.

With themed school supplies once again a trend, cartoon character-themed supplies are desired by 22% of high school students, according to the survey. Pop singer-themed supplies are most popular among middle school students at 43%.

“With thousands of back-to-school items available at our more than 8,000 stores, many of which are just around the corner, Walgreens has a great variety of in-stock supplies that will meet parents’ and children’s needs alike,” stated Bryan Pugh, VP merchandising, store design and Well Experience at Walgreens. 

However, many parents wait until its almost time to pack their kids back onto the school bus when it comes to stocking school supplies. As many as 43% of parents buy their children’s school supplies less than a month but more than a week before school starts. And 10% of back-to-school shoppers tend to procrastinate, purchasing supplies the week before up until the day school commences. 

Walgreens also surveyed parents on back-to-school physicals and immunizations. As many as 44% of total respondents reported that they wait until one to two weeks before school starts to get their children’s physicals. Likewise, nearly 40% of total respondents get their children’s immunizations within the last two weeks before school opens.

And nearly two-thirds of parents — 62% — said healthy solutions like tissues and hand sanitizer are important to include in their children’s backpacks.

Four-in-five parents use back-to-school lists. And there are several factors parents take into consideration when determining where to buy supplies. Participants cited “lowest prices” (28%) as the most important thing to consider. Knowing that a retailer has exactly what’s required from the child’s preparation list comes in at No. 2 (18%), although the percentage was significantly higher for parents with high school students at 32%.

Walgreens surveyed a representative sample of 1,000 U.S. adults online for its Back-to-School study. The research was conducted July 26-30, 2013 by Directions Research.

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UnitedHealthcare outlines incentive strategies around patient engagement to save on overall health spend

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — A new report from UnitedHealthcare released Monday discusses engagement strategies and incentives used by its employees that contributed to improved workforce health and $107 million in healthcare cost-savings in the first 36 months, illustrating how employers can play a valuable role in spurring employees to take action to improve their health.

“The article explains how health plans and other payers are uniquely positioned to ‘activate’ patients using data and information to identify missed screening opportunities, persistent gaps in care, fragmented or duplicative care, and patient safety issues, such as incompatible medications or missed monitoring of high-risk patients," stated Lewis Sandy, EVP clinical advancement, UnitedHealth Group.

“UnitedHealthcare Experience Illustrates How Payers Can Enable Patient Engagement,” published in the August issue of Health Affairs, describes how health plans have a unique ability to analyze and present information to help individuals make better health decisions. The report details UnitedHealthcare’s programs for analyzing information to identify gaps in care, using information to enable better treatment decisions, comparing care provider quality and cost to help inform care choices, and promoting better health and disease prevention using financial incentives and rewards.

The report sheds light on the opportunity to improve quality and efficiency in the U.S. healthcare system, and illustrates tools, strategies and incentives that more effectively enable people to take action to improve their health. Moreover, the report suggests practical lessons for Medicare, Medicaid and other payers.

“Payers can play an important role in engaging consumers and realizing the promise of a truly activated, engaged and supported patient,” said Simon Stevens, UnitedHealth Group EVP and president, Global Health. “Our Health Affairs report offers practical lessons for policymakers and suggests how Medicare and Medicaid could benefit from improved patient engagement. If likeminded strategies were used more broadly, they could be an effective tool in helping to improve quality and achieve a more efficient health system.”

UnitedHealth Group employees enrolled in “Rewards for Health” are eligible to earn points to qualify for insurance premium reductions of up to $1,200 per family per year for having health screenings to detect conditions like cancer or diabetes, or meeting certain targets such as body mass index reductions. In the first 24 months, 82% of employees earned points, and improvements were made in all quality measures over three years with particularly large increases identified in wellness visits and office-based screenings, colorectal cancer screenings and retinal eye exams for people with diabetes.

Most importantly, 7,200 employees at high risk for diabetes — including undiagnosed diabetes — were given the opportunity to better manage or prevent onset of the disease. In addition, 44% of overweight employees who engaged in health coaching improved the following year, with an average of 4.5% weight loss. Savings of $107 million in healthcare costs were realized in the first 36 months of the Rewards for Health program.

“Our own experience with our 133,000 employees shows that rewarding healthy behavior works," Sandy said. "Implementing patient-engagement strategies more broadly could have a profound impact on consumer health, help achieve wide-scale cost reductions and advance a higher-performing health system.” 

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B.Franklin says:
Aug-07-2013 02:36 am

In a recent survey it was found that united healthcare unit is outlining the incentives strategies surrounding the patient and trying more to invest on employee health by working on this they will no doubt improve the health care conditions as well as it would be cost effective so it is better that we support and find out the different reasons behind the health care needed for workers. The above information is extremely helpful and informative. urgent care center

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Target to acquire online skin care retailer DermStore

BY Alaric DeArment

MINNEAPOLIS — Target is acquiring online skin care site DermStore, the mass merchandise retailer said Tuesday.

Target said buying DermStore would allow it to expand its share of the online beauty market. The company will continue to operate under its online name, DermStore.com as a separate entity, but it will be a wholly owned subsidiary of Target. CEO Dan Obegi will be president of the subsidiary and will report to Target president of multichannel and SVP enterprise strategy Casey Carl. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"There is no doubt that the online beauty industry is growing rapidly, and this unique opportunity enables Target to gain insight into the superior, online customer experience DermStore provides," Carl said. "Not only will DermStore’s 750-plus brands offer Target expanded breadth across the beauty and skincare industries, but also access to exceptional content resources we know consumers want."

The deal is expected to close within 60 days.

"DermStore’s success was built on understanding the beauty market and catering to a shopper who’s seeking a wide array of prestige products, exceptional service and product expertise," Obegi said. "Our customers have come to trust us to consistently deliver a quality experience, and we are confident that this acquisition will benefit Target’s guests and expand Target’s online market share."

 

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