PHARMACY

Linking pharmacy and nutrition

BY Jim Frederick

The past year has been an eventful one for Hy-Vee.

(Click here to view the full report.)

The Iowa-based supermarket chain made news early last year by announcing it would enter, for the first time, the Twin Cities market of Minneapolis/St. Paul. Hy-Vee locked down two store locations in the area before year’s end, and laid out a fairly aggressive expansion plan that will add several new stores to the Twin Cities market per year, over the next several years.

Hy-Vee also expanded its reach into community health care and specialty pharmacy, finalizing its purchase last year of Amber Pharmacy.

Now in its 85th year, Hy-Vee thrives by catering to a fiercely loyal customer base with a homegrown brand of personal service and a steadily expanding menu of health-and-wellness offerings, served up by more than 900 pharmacists and some 200 dietitians offering advice on healthy eating in so-called “HealthMarket” departments in most Hy-Vee stores.

The company’s commitment to health-and-wellness is further reflected in such programs as NuVal nutritional scoring system and wellness programs for consumers and employees.

Dietitians and pharmacists provide scheduled group biometric screenings, both within the stores and at local employers’ workplaces, as well as counseling on weight loss, diabetes management and other topics. The company also partners with such regional health entities as the University of Nebraska Medical Center to offer customers rapid-diagnostic tests, conducted by Hy-Vee pharmacists, for such conditions as influenza and strep.

Earlier this year, the chain revealed it would discontinue its Hy-Vee Triathlon events, and “shift its efforts to create a new event series promoting health-and-wellness in children.”

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Ateb announces PQA appointments for 2015

BY Ryan Chavis

 

RALEIGH, N.C. — Ateb, a provider of pharmacy patient care solutions, on Monday announced the appointments of four Ateb pharmacists to the Pharmacy Quality Alliance’s measure development teams and stakeholder advisory panels for 2015.
 
The Pharmacy Quality Alliance is a nonprofit that promotes appropriate medication use and develops strategies for safety performance measures. According to Ateb, the PQA is recognized for its development of metrics as it relates to safe medication use, with many of its measures being used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for the Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Program.
 
“Once again this year, Ateb will play an important role in the measure developments of the Pharmacy Quality Alliance,” said Frank Sheppard, founder and CEO of Ateb. “Ateb’s appointments to the PQA measure development teams, as well as contributions to the stakeholder advisory panels, reflect the outstanding reputation of Ateb’s pharmacists and Ateb’s commitment to the industry. These measures developed by the PQA teams are used for Star Ratings, and our pharmacies and healthcare payers will greatly benefit from Ateb’s ongoing alignment with the PQA.”
 
Ateb was granted the maximum number of appointments to PQA measurement development teams this year. The teams are comprised of PQA members who applied to work on specific measures based on their individual strengths and experience. The Ateb pharmacists and their positions are: 
 
Appointee: Mark Gregory, RPh
Ateb Position: VP Health Solutions
MDT #3: MTM-Part D: Use of Patient Satisfaction Survey following CMR Completion
 
Appointee: Robb Ayshford, RPh, MBA
Ateb Position: VP Chain Strategic Solutions
MDT #5: Primary Medication Non-Adherence (PMN) – For Health Plans
 
Appointee: Rebecca Chater, RPh, MPH, FAPhA
Ateb Position: Executive Healthcare Strategist
MDT #6: Hospital and/or ED Utilization Related to ADEs
 
Appointee: Bob Mernar, RPh
Ateb Position: Privacy Officer
MDT #9: MTM-Part D: Specific Drug Therapy Problem (DTP) Resolution
 
Chater also was appointed to the PQA Immunization Task Force and will co-chair Stakeholder Advisory Panel C. 

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Rx programs, services play key role

BY Richard Monks

With more than 1,500 supermarkets and stand-alone drug stores, Sobeys Inc. plays a critical role in helping people across Canada stay healthy.

(Click here to view the full report.)

The company, which operates food stores under five different banners — including the Canada Safeway business it acquired in November 2013 — from Nova Scotia to British Columbia, has prescription counters in 335 of its supermarkets and all 70 of its Lawton’s Drug stores in New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Dubbed PROfile pharmacists, the pharmacy professionals in the company’s stores offer a comprehensive roster of services to patients, ranging from prescription reviews to ensure each script is filled with the right medication in the proper dosage to one-on-one counseling on new prescriptions.

With so many prescriptions taken incorrectly, Sobeys and Lawtons have implemented several programs and services aimed
at ensuring that patients get the most from their medications.

The company’s AutoFill Plus program, for instance, ensures that patients do not miss doses, make fewer trips to the pharmacy and spend less time waiting for their prescriptions to be filled.

Under the Pill Pack Plus program, Sobeys and Lawtons pharmacists work with patients to manage dose changes and ensure that patients are taking their medications at the right times. In addition, patients participating in the program are notified when they need to contact their physician for renewals.

Because it is often difficult for patients to stay on top of product recalls and health warnings, PROfile pharmacists monitor Health Canada and manufacturer information for medication-related advisories and drug recalls.

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