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Kroger hosts annual Red Kettle campaign

BY Allison Cerra

CINCINNATI — Kroger announced that it once again will support The Salvation Army by kicking off its annual Red Kettle campaign.

"Through the familiar Red Kettles, our customers and associates are able to make small donations that, added together, make a big difference for local families and individuals," Kroger group VP corporate affairs Lynn Marmer said. "We value our long-standing partnership with The Salvation Army and the impact this campaign has for our neighbors in need."

In 2010, Kroger customers and associates contributed $12.9 million to the campaign, which represents 9% of the record $142 million raised nationwide. Each year, customers and associates support the Red Kettle campaign that provides food, clothing, toys and social services in the communities where funds are raised.

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Walgreens CMO talks to state legislatures about expanding healthcare access

BY Michael Johnsen

TAMPA, Fla. — Walgreens’ chief medical officer Cheryl Pegus delivered a keynote session Tuesday at the National Conference of State Legislatures Fall Forum here. The presentation, titled “Expanding Access to Care for Women and Exploring Health Delivery Models,” outlined the innovative approaches in health care today, and shared how Walgreens complements these new models.

“Women are often the gate-keepers of their family’s health — responsible for the wellbeing of their families but also themselves,” Pegus said. “With today’s busy lifestyles and rising healthcare costs, individuals, employers and payers are looking for innovative solutions to improve access and outcomes while managing costs.”

Pegus highlighted new approaches that are helping to fill the gaps of primary care, contribute to quality chronic disease management and increase access for traditional underserved populations. These included the expanded roles of nurse practitioners and community pharmacists and the increasing access to retail clinics as an affordable and convenient option.

Pegus was named Walgreens CMO in May 2010 and has more than 18 years of clinical practice and industry experience.  Previously, she was general manager and chief medical officer for SymCare Personalized Health Solutions.  Prior to joining SymCare in 2007, she held a number of positions at Aetna, eventually becoming head of clinical products for the company’s Medical Products business unit.  She was also medical director for the cardiovascular risk factors group at Pfizer Pharmaceuticals. Pegus is a board-certified physician with subspecialty training in cardiology.

The National Conference of State Legislatures is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the nation’s 50 states, its commonwealths and territories. NCSL provides research, technical assistance to policymakers. The leadership of NCSL is composed of legislators and staff from across the country.


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Save-A-Lot’s new distribution center supports company’s expansion plans

BY Allison Cerra

ST. LOUIS — Supervalu banner Save-A-Lot will open a new 330,000-sq.-ft. food distribution center in Lexington, N.C., on Wednesday.

The distribution center initially will service more than 70 stores within a 150-mile radius, Save-A-Lot noted.

The distribution center, which will employ 35 employees, is part of the company’s commitment to expand in the region. Currently, there are nearly 30 Save-A-Lot stores in North Carolina, including one in Lexington; the company plans to open an additional three stores in the state by March 2012.

“This project represents an investment of more than $24 million in North Carolina,” Save-A-Lot VP distribution John Gerber said. “We are committed to growth in the region. We completed construction ahead of schedule and are thrilled to now be able to begin serving our Save-A-Lot stores throughout the area.”

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