HEALTH

CVS to offer uninsured patients free flu shots

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. CVS Caremark is partnering with nonprofit Direct Relief USA to offer up to $5 million in free flu shots to community clinic and health center patients who lack health insurance, the company announced on Wednesday.

Direct Relief USA works with 1,100 clinics and health centers in all 50 states, providing them with free medications and supplies for their low-income and uninsured patients. Most of the facilities in Direct Relief’s network are affiliated with either the National Association of Community Health Centers or the National Association of Free Clinics. CVS Caremark and Direct Relief USA will distribute vouchers redeemable for a free flu shot at any CVS/pharmacy or MinuteClinic to participating clinics and health centers. These facilities will identify uninsured individuals from their existing patient populations in order to provide them with a free flu shot voucher.

Beginning Sept. 20, CVS free flu shot vouchers for the uninsured will be available at participating community clinic and health centers for their existing patients. Names and locations of participating clinics will be made available on Sept. 20.

"With every CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic location providing flu vaccinations this year, we want to make sure that as many people as possible have access to a flu shot, including patients for whom cost may be a barrier," stated Larry Merlo, president and COO of CVS Caremark. "The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending that everyone receive a flu shot this year. We are pleased to partner with Direct Relief USA to help accomplish that goal."

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Wallace named GSK Consumer Healthcare VP

BY Michael Johnsen

PITTSBURGH GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare on Tuesday named Stacy Wallace to the newly created role of VP customer marketing and 360° Insights.

Under Wallace’s direction, the customer marketing and 360° Insights team will continue the development and execution of category visions and strategies in the area of health and wellness and in the creation of insight-led innovative and fully evaluated shopper marketing programs, the company stated.

Wallace joined GSK in 2002 working in the United Kingdom on the nutritional healthcare business. She joined the GSK Consumer Healthcare U.S. business in 2008 as the sales strategy director and most recently served as director of category marketing and 360° Insights.

Wallace was recently profiled in the “Who’s Who in Shopper Marketing,” a publication that recognizes the best in the industry in insight-driven, customized retail shopper marketing activation.

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FDA to investigate egg production sites

BY Allison Cerra

SILVER SPRING, Md. Investigators at the Food and Drug Administration will check the 600 largest egg production facilities in the United States over the next 15 months, with the help of state and local partners.

The FDA’s efforts are part of a new egg safety rule that went into effect in July, following a salmonella outbreak. Nearly 1,500 cases of illnesses were reported, according to FDA Consumer Health Information.

The announcement was posted on the agency’s website.

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