HEALTH

Drive Medical appoints Mazzacone as new EVP business development

BY Michael Johnsen

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y. Drive Medical earlier this week named longtime industry veteran Victor Mazzacone the company’s EVP business development, effective Aug. 11.

Drive Medical manufactures a complete line of durable medical equipment, including mobility products, self-assist products and personal care products.

Mazzacone will be responsible for developing and managing new sale opportunities in the retail, mass merchandise and consumer product areas in the North America.

Mazzacone joins Drive from Novartis, where he served as SVP corporate development for the over-the-counter medical business. During his tenure at Novartis,, he was responsible for overseeing the entire North American sales force for the Gerber baby products and OTC medical business. Mazzacone has also worked at GlaxoSmithKline and has approximately 30 years of experience in the consumer product/retail market arenas.

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Consumer Reports discusses H1N1 precautions in new issue

BY Allison Cerra

YONKERS, N.Y. As the U.S. prepares for a possible second wave of the novel H1N1 pandemic, as well as for the annual scourge of seasonal flu and colds, a new report from Consumer Reports helps households prepare for, prevent, and treat cold and flu symptoms safely and effectively, including recommendations for what to pack in an emergency kit for a flu outbreak.

Consumer Reports discusses the “what if?” in their newest issue, suggesting that if a second wave of H1N1 is severe enough to warrant home confinement, consumers should pack an emergency kit in advance, which should include:

  • A two-week supply of food and water.
  • Such fever reducers as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen.
  • Cough and cold medications containing chlorpheniramine, diphenhydramine, oxymetazoline, and pseudoephedrine and lozenges with dyclonine, glycerin, or honey can help ease symptoms.
  • Electrolyte drinks, such as Gatorade or Powerade, to keep you hydrated.
  • Hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol, such as Purell, to kill viruses when soap and water aren’t available.
  • Surgical masks with an FDA rating of at least N-95 to help prevent spreading the flu. Masks need to be replaced often and disposed of after use.

For all emergencies, Consumer Reports recommends packing at least three days’ worth of nonperishable food; at least one gallon of water per person, per day; a first-aid kit that includes any prescription or over-the-counter medications your family might need; as well as antihistamines for allergic reactions, pain relievers, stomach and antidiarrhea remedies, and antacids.

Consumer Reports also points out that it recommends everyone — but especially high-risk people — get vaccinated against regular, seasonal flu before the year’s end.

“This could be an especially big year for flu, so people need to take every precaution and double their efforts to safeguard their families,” said Joel Keehn, senior editor, Consumer Reports. “Even when the vaccine doesn’t prevent seasonal flu, it often lessens its symptoms. In terms of treatments, certain antiviral drugs can not only ease symptoms of seasonal flu but also shorten its duration and possibly prevent complications as well. Some of those drugs probably help against swine flu too. Antivirals work best if taken early on in the illness, so it’s best to take them at the first sign of symptoms.”

Additionally, the new report also discusses which cold and allergy medications are the best remedies for ailments, as Consumer Reports discusses both “at-home remedies” and generic versions of over-the-counter medications.

The report is available in the September 2009 issue of Consumer Reports and online at www.ConsumerReportsHealth.org.

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Church & Dwight Co. report strong Q2 earnings

BY Anna Mcgrath

PRINCETON, N.J. Church & Dwight Co. reported a net-income increase for the quarter ended June 26 to $58.2 million, compared with last year’s $45.8 million.

Net sales for the second quarter rose approximately 5% to $623.1 million.

“We are very pleased with our solid second quarter results, particularly in this difficult economic environment. We were able to increase market share for six of our eight “power brands” in the quarter, achieve continued strong organic sales growth in our household product line and effect a turnaround to positive organic sales growth in our personal care product line. Our results also reflect exceptional gross and operating margin expansion. The improved gross margin reflects lower commodity costs, pricing, acquisition benefits relating to the businesses acquired from Coty and our continuing robust cost reduction programs,” said chairman and CEO James R. Craigie.

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