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Healthcare reform: All in favor say ‘aye!’

BY Antoinette Alexander

The interest in healthcare reform has reached a new high, especially in light of the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, yet there’s no denying that consumers are still unclear as to the impact on their personal healthcare and insurance issues. That being said, Americans see a need for change as they battle rising costs and a lack of access to care, and many are saying "aye" to healthcare reform, according to the most recent Patient Views infographic. To be specific, two-thirds of respondents say they support healthcare reform, according to an exclusive survey of nearly 800 patients conducted by AccentHealth and DSN in late July and early August.

Meanwhile, a separate study recently released by TNS underscored these findings and also found that, while few understand the personal implications of healthcare reform, Americans generally agree on the end goals for health reform — appropriate and effective patient care, lower costs and easier access to coverage for all.

To see more Patient Views, click here.

Patient Views is a new, exclusive consumer insights feature that will be appear in every edition of DSN magazine and the daily e-newsletter DSN A.M. If you could ask 4,000 patients anything at all, what would it be? Send your questions to reder@lf.com.

Are you in favor of healthcare reform?

Source: AccentHealth. To view the methodology, click here.

 

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Study: Majority of critically ill children have low vitamin D blood levels

BY Michael Johnsen

 OTTAWA, Canada — A recent study published in the journal Pediatrics determined that 3-out-of-4 critically ill children were found to have vitamin D blood levels below the target considered safe by many experts and medical societies. 

"This is the first study to report on vitamin D levels in a large group of critically ill children," stated Dayre McNally, lead researcher and a clinical researcher and intensivist at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario.

The study included more than 300 children and teenagers at six Canadian hospitals in Ottawa, Toronto, Hamilton, Edmonton, Saskatoon and Vancouver. These children were admitted to an Intensive Care Unit with severe infections, significant trauma or conditions requiring major surgery, such as congenital heart defects.

In addition to 3-out-of-4 having suboptimal vitamin D blood levels, those with lower vitamin D levels were noted to be sicker, requiring more life-sustaining therapies (e.g., breathing tubes, medications to support heart function) and staying in the ICU for longer periods of time.


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Regional pharmacy retailer conference focuses on social media

BY Alaric DeArment

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — Social media was the biggest topic of discussion as regional retail pharmacy executives from around the country gathered last month for the Southern Drug Stores Association’s annual meeting.

VP marketing Theron Andrews of Seattle-based Bartell Drugs gave a presentation on how to use social media such as Facebook and Twitter to benefit customers’ knowledge of pharmacy goods and services, while social media expert Phil Adikes was a featured speaker for the event, which took place at Keswick Hall at Monticello in Charlottesville, Va. from Aug. 8-11, drawing chains like Drug Emporium, Fruth Pharmacy, Hartig Drug, Kinney Drugs, Lifechek Drug, Sav-Mor Drugs, Sav-On Drugs, Red Cross Pharmacy and Ritzman Pharmacies. Sav-On Drugs CEO Bill Newman will be the new SDSA chairman next year, the group said.

"The time spent at Southern Drug always pays dividends for us," Fruth Pharmacy president Lynne Fruth said. "Looking at new product offerings and sharing best practices with other chains is invaluable. We always come back with products or a few new initiatives to implement, and the time we are able to spend with business partners is very beneficial."

Other events allowed extensive interactions between vendors and pharmacy executives.

"I can honestly say that this was one of the finest pharmacy business meetings I have ever attended," pharmacy technology manufacturer Kirby Lester’s Christopher Thomsen said. "Granted, the location and facilities were first-rate, but the overall organization of this event and the quality of the meetings and social events were world-class."

 

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