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Cardinal Health Specialty Solutions makes KEW’s diagnostic services available to oncology customers

BY Michael Johnsen

DUBLIN, Ohio — Cardinal Health Specialty Solutions and KEW Group, a privately held oncology services company, on Monday announced an agreement for the two companies to make KEW's diagnostic services available to Specialty Solutions' community oncology customers.
 
"We are committed to working with all players in the healthcare system to ensure the right patients are treated at the right time, with the most effective medication, in the most convenient, accessible setting," stated Scott Howell, SVP clinical services for Cardinal Health Specialty Solutions. "Our expanded agreement with KEW helps us deliver on that commitment, by providing community oncologists with access to advanced diagnostics tools that can help them make the best, most informed treatment decisions for their patients, while improving the overall cost effectiveness of care." 
 
Cardinal Health Specialty Solutions customers will now have access to KEW's CancerPlex, a versatile and comprehensive genetic test providing accurate, thorough and timely molecular diagnosis of patients' solid tumors, providing oncologists the ability to manage their treatment decisions with the precision provided by personalized medicine. 
 
CancerPlex simultaneously provides complete sequence coverage of more than 410 cancer genes; simplifies and streamlines the test-ordering process by eliminating serial "hotspot" tests; delivers a comprehensive report, including actionable data; informs physicians of optimal treatment options using approved therapies and available clinical trials; and supports clinical trial enrollment by providing oncologists with required molecular data.
 
CancerPlex testing is performed at KEW's CLIA laboratory. After an oncologist orders CancerPlex, KEW facilitates tumor specimen retrieval from the patient's pathologist; analyzes the specimen at its CLIA lab and then reports the findings to the oncologist. This process reveals genetic and genomic changes that impact a patient's optimal treatment options, and which may otherwise remain undiscovered by limited genetic screening or less comprehensive tests. KEW then provides the oncologist with information on diagnostic findings and potential treatment options (including clinical trials) that are most appropriate for the patient.
 
"We are excited to make our leading-edge molecular sequencing tumor diagnostics tools available to the nationwide network of community oncologists served by Cardinal Health Specialty Solutions," stated Scott Schell, CEO of KEW Group. "We look forward to working with Specialty Solutions and community oncologists – who treat 80% of cancer patients in the United States – empowering them with the ability to provide personalized medicine treatments previously only available at large cancer treatment and academic centers."
 
Earlier this year, KEW announced that it had closed a private round of financing with Cardinal Health and the Bolyston Street Group. John Sullivan, VP strategy and corporate development at Cardinal Health, serves KEW's board of directors.  
 
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Meijer debuts food solutions program

BY Vivian Gomez

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Meijer has launched a first-of-its-kind food solutions program in each of its 213 stores. According to the retailer, “Ready! For You” is designed to meet the tastes and lifestyles of busy families by providing recipe ideas, inspiration and savings opportunities in-store and online.
 
“Families are busier than ever and feeling squeezed for both time and money,” said Randy Stewart, group VP of foods for Meijer. “We’re excited to launch this new program as shoppers focus on back to school and get back into a routine of family meals that are affordable and quick to prepare.”
 
Inside Meijer stores, Ready! For You-branded meal displays pair food solution items from various manufacturers together. Shoppers have the opportunity to taste what’s on display with weekly sampling demos. Meijer is creating online videos with quick and simple food ideas and is sharing a steady cadence of recipes on breakfast, lunch and dinner Pinterest boards.
 
The items that make up each Ready! For You meal have an average cost of between $12-$15 to feed a family of four and are all part of weekly sales promotions. Customers can also get discounts when they buy multiple Ready! For You items, which can save shoppers an additional 15-20%.
 
“One of the biggest hurdles that prevents families from cooking at home is finding new meal and snack ideas that are affordable, delicious and quick to prepare,” Meijer healthy living adviser and registered dietitian Shari Steinbach said. “The quick and easy food solutions in the Ready! For You program are an exciting and affordable way to help families get back in the kitchen.”
 
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DSN resident PharmD takes over @DrugStoreNews for global #Pharmacist ‘tweet-a-thon’

BY Rob Eder

NEW YORK — Drug Store News director of continuing education and clinical content Suzanne Feeney, PharmD, will take over the Drug Store News twitter handle @drugstorenews, as part of the global #Pharmacist tweet-a-thon on Thursday, Oct. 2. 
 
Highlighting the important role pharmacists have in patient care, their communities and the healthcare industry at-large, the annual event, now in its second year, pharmacists from all over the world will tweet about what they have done to help advance community pharmacy practice. Last year, more than 7,100 tweets with the hashtag #Pharmacist were sent during the inaugural event, noted the Community Pharmacy Association, with #Pharmacist ranking as the highest trending healthcare-related hashtag that day, Oct. 3, 2013.
 
Feeney, a former Supervalu pharmacist, and coordinator of the Drug Store News Continuing Education program, will lead the conversation for DSN during the one-day pharmacist tweet-a-thon. 
 
What is your company doing to help advance the role of community pharmacy in health care, and/or helping to advance the practice of pharmacy at retail? Join the conversation on Oct. 2 — and don’t forget to use the hashtag #Pharmacist.
 
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