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Former Walgreens senior operator to lead Fred’s store operations

BY Michael Johnsen

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Fred’s Super Dollar has named John Foley as the company's EVP store operations, the company announced Wednesday morning. Mike Holligan, who formerly served in this capacity, will move to the open position of regional VP store operations.
 
“John's addition will extend the momentum we have developed in store operations and will further strengthen the talent of our management team, one of the key steps we have outlined that will help position Fred's to drive profitability and grow its convenience/pharmacy-centric model,” Fred’s CEO Jerry Shore said. “We are grateful for the sacrifices and contributions Mike Holligan has made during this past year in leading all store operations.”
 
More and more, Fred’s is fielding several heavy-hitting retail pharmacy operators that has been molding the Southeast regional into a successful retail pharmacy/value operator hybrid. Heading up Fred's as president and COO is CVS Health marketing and merchandising veteran Michael Bloom, who himself served as president and COO of dollar store operator Family Dollar. Filling the chief merchandising and marketing officer spot at Fred's is Bryan Pugh, who was a product pioneer for Walgreens for more than 10 years. 
 
Then there’s Fred's homegrown pharmacy operator Rick Chambers, who joined Fred’s as a pharmacist after graduating from the Univeristy of Tennessee College of Pharmacy in 1992. In his 23 years at the company, Chambers has gravitated to EVP pharmacy and has played a significant role in elevating the role of pharmacy at Fred’s. 
 
And now retail pharmacy operations executive Foley. Foley brings to Fred's more than 30 years of experience in retail pharmacy chain experience. For the past nine years, he was corporate operations VP at Walgreens, responsible for the Eastern Division, which in 2014 accounted for approximately $20 billion in revenue from more than 2,500 retail pharmacies, health care clinics and specialty pharmacy units. Prior to this role with Walgreen's, Foley served as a district manager for six years and was a store manager for 11 years.

 

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Poll: Almost 1-in-4 duped by unverified online medical advice

BY David Salazar

KENILWORTH, N.J. — A new survey from Harris Poll on behalf of Merck Manuals is highlighting the potential dangers of the vast amount of medical information on the Internet. The survey found that 24% of Americans have been misled by information about a symptom or illness because of an unverified online source. Among parents with children younger than 18, 30% have been misled, and 43% of millennials have been, too. 

“Clicking the first article that pops up in an online search may be the easiest course when researching health issues, but it can also be dangerous if the information doesn't come from a credible source,” Merck Manuals editor-in-chief Dr. Robert Porter said. “These results underscore the need for greater access to and awareness of highly credible health information.” 

In response to the survey data, Merck Manuals and its international counterpart MSD Manuals have developed a credibility test called the STANDS method. It includes: 

  • Source: Does the article or website cite authorities and have credentials?
  • Transparent: Is it clear whether it is an education or commercial site?
  • Accessible: Do you have to register, and is there contact info if users have concerns?
  • Neutral: Is it a resource or is the information only given in exchange for users buying products or visiting advertised websites?
  • Documented: Do medical experts update the resource?
  • Secure: Can the content be accessed without sharing personal information? 

The push for people to know whether they’re trusting credible sources for health information is part of the Manuals’ Global Medical Knowledge 202 initiative, which is pushing to make accurate and up-to-date medical information available to three billion people by 2020.

“The Internet will continue to be flooded with new health information and websites, which is why we need to stress to consumers the importance of identifying credible health information sources,” Porter said.

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Shoppers Drug Mart loyalty program celebrates 15 years

BY Michael Johnsen

TORONTO – Shoppers Drug Mart is celebrating the 15th birthday of the Shoppers Optimum loyalty program with a huge outdoor party at Toronto's Yonge-Dundas Square on Wednesday, Oct. 7. Shoppers will be invited to join the party and step inside a life-size Shoppers Optimum confetti globe for a chance to win prizes, including an all-inclusive sun-filled vacation. 
 
Visitors will also enjoy live entertainment (aerialists), birthday treats (popcorn and confetti cupcakes) and receive a birthday loot bag.
 
The Toronto event is a preview to Shoppers Optimum's 15-day national celebration (#15DaysofHappy) that runs from Oct. 10 to Oct. 24 with in-store promotions and contests to win products, points and luxury vacations from Sunwing and Royalton Luxury Resorts.
 
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