HEALTH

FTC looks to debunk health benefit claims made by POM Wonderful in suit

BY Allison Cerra

WASHINGTON The Federal Trade Commission has sued the maker of a pomegranate juice that touts health benefit claims.

 

The FTC announced that it was suing POM Wonderful for its "deceptive advertising" on Monday. Federal regulators alleged that ads that ran in such publications as the New York Times, as well as Parade, Fitness and Prevention magazines, violated federal law by making deceptive disease prevention and treatment claims, including "clinical studies prove that POM Juice and POMx prevent, reduce the risk of and treat [heart disease, prostate cancer and erectile dysfunction]." The FTC complaint said that the claims are false because the company either:

  • Conducted scientific studies that did not show heart disease benefit from use of its products;
  • The study POM Wonderful relied on was neither “blinded” nor controlled (to merit prostate cancer claims); or
  • The study on which the company relied (for erectile dysfunction claims) did not show that POM Juice was any more effective than a placebo.

 

 

“Any consumer who sees POM Wonderful products as a silver bullet against disease has been misled,” said David Vladeck, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.  “When a company touts scientific research in its advertising, the research must squarely support the claims made. Contrary to POM Wonderful’s advertising, the available scientific information does not prove that POM Juice or POMx effectively treats or prevents these illnesses.”

 

The FTC issues an administrative complaint when it has reason to believe that the law has been or is being violated, and it appears to the commission that a proceeding is in the public interest, the government agency noted.

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Rite Aid highlights patients’ favorite pharmacists with annual contest

BY Allison Cerra

CAMP HILL, Pa. Rite Aid is asking patients to vote for their favorite pharmacist during the month of October, which is American Pharmacists Month.

Through Oct. 31, Rite Aid patients are encouraged to vote for their favorite pharmacist on RiteAid.com or in any Rite Aid store, an annual contest now in its seventh year. One patient and one pharmacist will each receive $2,500 in Rite Aid gift cards through a random drawing.

“American Pharmacists Month is the perfect time to honor Rite Aid pharmacists for all they do to keep their patients and communities healthy,” said Robert Thompson, Rite Aid EVP pharmacy. “Our pharmacists provide outstanding patient care every day, whether they’re counseling patients on medications, administering immunizations or helping them manage a new or difficult disease. Our Favorite Pharmacist program is a great way for our company and patients to thank them for their hard work and dedication throughout the year.”

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Kerr Drug delivers in a big way

BY Allison Cerra

RALEIGH, N.C. In an effort to further connect customers to their pharmacy, Kerr Drug now is offering free drug delivery to those that are ill, housebound or simply too busy to pick up their prescriptions.

How it works: Kerr Drug customers call their prescriptions in to the store pharmacist and request the prescription be delivered to their home or office, and the customer must sign for their prescription when the medication is delivered. To add even more value to the service, in addition to the prescription delivery, any other item from the store also can be delivered free of charge.

“Kerr Drug is a pioneer in the concept of community pharmacy, and ultimately what that means is finding the best way to serve the people in your community,” said Tony Civello, president and CEO of Kerr Drug. “There are times and circumstances when customers can’t get to the pharmacy, so this is a way to bring the pharmacy to them.”

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