PHARMACY

DSN, higi launch June’s Fit Pharmacist Challenge

BY DSN STAFF

Drug Store News, in partnership with higi, a consumer health engagement company, is hosting the first-ever Fit Pharmacist Challenge, a series of fitness-tracking competitions for pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.

Entrants who walk — or run — 50 miles or more during a one-month Fit Pharmacist Challenge period, will be entered to win the monthly grand prize, a $500 American Express gift card. Entrants who log at least 10 miles will be entered to win 1-of-3 runner up prizes of a $100 American Express gift card. Winners will be selected randomly throughout the month and will be featured in DSN.

“As pharmacists play a more proactive role in consumer health care, it’s even more important for them to model healthy behavior for their customers,” said DSN publisher Wayne Bennett.

The higi health station platform integrates with more than 50 fitness apps and devices, including Fitbit, Nike+ and many more.

The first Fit Pharmacist Challenge kicks off in June, with a second slated for September and others to be announced later this year.

To register, visit DrugStoreNewsCE.com/fit-pharmacist.

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NACDS Annual Meeting rewind

BY DSN STAFF

PALM BEACH, Fla. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores chairman’s gavel officially traded hands last month, here, at NACDS Annual Meeting, as Rite Aid chairman and CEO John Standley wrapped up his one-year term, and incoming chairman Randy Edeker, chairman, CEO and president of Hy-Vee embarked on his.

“Health care is undergoing historic change, which is creating unprecedented demands on our business, but also enormous opportunities to grow,” Standley said during his last remarks as NACDS chairman, outlining the five pillars of NACDS membership value:

  • Strengthening relationships between retailers and suppliers;
  • Protecting patient access to community pharmacy;
  • Expanding scope of healthcare services beyond filling prescriptions;
  • Training the next generation of pharmacists; and
  • Making sure that legislators and policy-makers understand the value community pharmacy brings to health care.

In his first remarks as NACDS chairman, Edeker noted, “The evolution of health care is here, with pharmacies as the face of neighborhood health care. The new healthcare definition includes environmental factors, nutrition, the social environment, emotional and spiritual factors.”

Forecasting what’s ahead for NACDS, Edeker outlined 10 priorities for his leadership, including monitoring closely the ongoing changes in Medicaid; healthcare delivery; attitudes and expectations of care; specialty pharmacy; quality measurements; technology and patient-managed health; millennial trends; cyber security; growing collaboration among companies through NACDS; and political involvement.

From the business sessions to the strategic meetings along cabana row, and all of the evening events, DSN once again covered all the action from NACDS Annual Meeting in its exclusive Show Daily editions. For all the news from Annual Meeting, visit DrugStoreNews.com/show-watch.

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Meijer gears up for specialty Rx with big acquisition

BY Michael Johnsen

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Meijer announced Wednesday that it has signed an agreement to acquire Aureus Health Services, a national specialty pharmacy and health services company based in Pittsburgh, Pa. and a portfolio company of BelHealth Investment Partners, to enhance its customer offerings, particularly to patients with complex chronic conditions.
 
“The ability to provide specialty pharmacy services to our customers supports our objective to provide total patient care,” Meijer president J.K. Symancyk said. “Between Aureus Health Services’ national strength and the strong Midwest footprint of Meijer, this purchase combines two reputable industry leaders, and creates an opportunity for national growth by providing better service to customers.” 
 
Aureus Health Services most recently inked a partnership with CARE Pharmacies to provide management services to CARE's 79 member pharmacies.
 
"We looked at a number of potential partners to assist us in providing a higher level of care to our specialty patients and Aureus was the best," stated Mike Wysong, CEO CARE, in announcing the deal earlier this month. "Aureus' highly trained support team and comprehensive care management model offers a level of support and expertise required to ensure the very best outcomes for our customers." 
 
Aureus Health Services CEO Michael Nameth will remain in his role of CEO in the new Meijer business unit. The acquisition is expected to be finalized within the next few months. Meijer plans to maintain the company’s current patient services centers across the country.
 
 
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