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Kroger to carry medical record flash drive

BY Drew Buono

CINCINNATI A flash drive that will store all of a patient’s personal health records, from allergies to insurance to past surgeries, will go on sale at 103 Kroger stores in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky next week, according to published reports.

The device, called MedFlash will be on the pharmacy counter in Kroger stores and is the first electronic personal health record device that the company will sell, spokeswoman Rachael Betzler said. She added that, “This is the direction the medical community is going, to take everything electronic,” she said. “It makes it really easy for the customer.”

The device combines the flash drive with a Web portal that a patient can access even without the drive. The records can also be downloaded through any computer.

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Hallmark offers dad-positive Father’s Day cards

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK Apparently, some dads don’t find Father’s Day cards poking fun at stereotypes about them funny.

Hallmark Cards is marketing cards with the positive messages for this year’s Father’s Day after complaints that cards often portray fathers as slobs.

Cards that emphasize dad’s love of beer drinking, snoring and inability to give up the TV remote will still be on sale, but so will cards with the sorts of messages more common on Mother’s Day cards.

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Walgreens partners with Google Health for healthcare records access

BY Alaric DeArment

DEERFIELD, Ill. A major pharmacy chain and a major Internet portal are collaborating to allow patients to view their prescription histories online.

Walgreens will provide patients access to their prescription histories through Google Health, a service that the Internet search engine launched Monday that gives patients online access to personal medical information.

Walgreens, which already allows patients to store their pharmacy information on its Web site, hopes the new service will allow patients to better provide multiple healthcare professionals with medical information by securely linking their information on Walgreens.com with Google Health.

Microsoft launched a similar service, HealthVault, last year.

Walgreens has a long history of pharmacy technology innovation. In the early 1980s, the company was the first retail pharmacy chain to computerize all of its pharmacies nationwide and link them via satellite. In 1992, Walgreens invented the electronic prescription, which is seen today as one of the leading ways to enhance pharmacy safety and lower prescription costs. More recently, Walgreens was the first pharmacy to fully integrate its online pharmacy with its retail pharmacies and was the first to offer prescription label directions in 14 different languages.

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