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Healthcare.com launches private-label care provider directory

BY Michael Johnsen

MIAMI HealthCare.com, an online healthcare provider search platform, last week announced the launch of its private-label care provider directory for drugstore.com.

As part of the new offerings, visitors to the drugstore.com web site will now be able to search the Healthcare.com’s provider directory, which includes more than 1 million listings for medical and dental professionals, practices, facilities and health-related businesses in more than 120 health and wellness-related categories.

“[The]drugstore.com [site] was a pioneer in health-related e-commerce, and is today one of the most recognizable brands on the web,” stated Rob Monster, chairman of HealthCare.com. “This partnership builds on that heritage. By incorporating HealthCare.com’s global directory of healthcare providers, drugstore.com’s users can not only shop for health-related products on the leading online drugstore, but also search for care using the world’s most complete database of care providers.”

“We believe this medical provider search solution is a valuable benefit for our pharmacy and over-the- counter customers and is an important addition to services we already offer such as the Drug Information Database, Drug Interaction Checker and Ask Your Pharmacist,” said drugstore.com’s director of pharmacy services Arvin Marchel.

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JPMA refutes media reports about dangers of baby bottle materials

BY Jenna Duncan

MT. LAUREL, N.J. The media has been asked by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association to halt stories with claims of purported negative health effects from using baby products containing bisphenol A (BPA). JPMA claims that statements of ill health linked to items containing BPA are often misleading and frighten consumers.

According to JPMA, research has shown that when used properly, products made with BPA do not pose a health threat.

Robert Waller, Jr., the president of JPMA, said, “JPMA is extremely disappointed in the media for speculating that Health Canada’s assessment of BPA would recommend labeling the chemical a dangerous substance, when in fact the report has not even been issued yet.”

Claims in the media have stated that risk may come from the plastic shields on pacifiers, parts of baby bottles or sippy cups being broken down or chewed, and then ingested with food or saliva. Scientific findings indicate that BPA may cause estrogenic effects in laboratory animals, and so concerns about the safety of baby products, especially bottles, has been under scrutiny.

JPMA, whose mission is to educate consumers and industry professionals about juvenile products and safety, is referring consumers to its Web site, www.babybottles.org, for more information on BPA and related health findings.

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American Greetings reports fiscal 2008 profit

BY Doug Desjardins

CLEVELAND American Greetings generated $83.3 million in earnings for fiscal 2008, including $15.6 million in the fourth quarter ended Feb. 29, and more than $1.77 billion in total sales for year. Total sales were down about 1 percent from $1.79 billion the previous year, but earnings were up 96 percent from $42.4 million.

“I’m pleased we were able to achieve earnings within our forecasted range and exceed our cash flow guidance,” said American Greetings chief executive officer Zev Weiss. “Our strong cash flow allowed us to make two acquisitions in the digital photo space and repurchase shares.”

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