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NAD recommends Lunada tone down claims for menopausal supplement

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus on Wednesday recommended Lunada Biomedical modify or discontinue a certain range of advertising claims for Amberen, a dietary supplement promoted to menopausal women.

NAD noted in its decision that Lunada had voluntarily discontinued certain claims, including claims that relief is "complete," "fast," that Amberen is an "all-in-one solution," and that Amberen can achieve "balanced production and circulation of hormones throughout your body" and support "the optimal function of your vital organs. Energy metabolism is soon restored. Suddenly you feel younger!"

NAD also noted Lunada’s decision to discontinue making its claim that the ingredients in Amberen are on the Food and Drug Administration’s Generally Recognized as Safe list.

NAD shared several concerns around the disconnect between a study purportedly supporting Lunada’s claims and the advertising at issue. NAD recommended that Lunada discontinue claims that Amberen relieves "night sweats," "moodiness" and "inability to concentrate." Further, NAD cautioned the advertiser against suggesting or implying that the product provides complete or near-complete relief of symptoms.

NAD determined the company could support claims related to its proprietary technology, as well as the claim that Amberen could lessen various symptoms of menopause.
 
NAD is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation and administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus. As a part of its ongoing monitoring program and in conjunction with NAD’s initiative with the Council for Responsible Nutrition designed to expand review of advertising claims for dietary supplements, NAD requested the advertiser provide substantiation for claims made in print and Internet advertising.


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Walmart’s retail medical clinics to add telemedicine services

BY Allison Cerra

LONDON — A worldwide provider of managed videoconferencing, telepresence and visual collaboration services has partnered with Telemed Ventures to deliver a managed visual collaboration solution to Walmart’s retail medical clinics.

BSC Global said it is bringing its service — which enables remote video consultations between a patient and doctor through a life-like, virtual face-to-face video interface over a secure video network — to Walmart’s retail medical clinics, which are operated by Telemed Ventures’ Smart Care Doc brand. Users of the service have the ability to conduct telepresence-quality face-to-face interactions over the Internet using existing laptops, smartphones or tablets — making it a very affordable solution for patients, doctors and healthcare providers, the companies said.

"We are very excited to partner with Telemed to deliver our managed, cloud-based, visual collaboration solution to Walmart’s retail medical clinics," BCS Global CEO Clive Sawkins said. "Video technology continues to evolve exponentially; technology that came to market 12 to 18 months ago is now primetime. Surpassing the underlying technology that powered the legacy video systems of yesterday, is a newer, more intelligent technology that enables us to bring to Walmart’s retail medical clinics, a cost-effective solution, and an improved user experience."


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R.HAMMERLE says:
Jun-13-2012 10:25 pm

Realizing telemedicine's potential-- and Walmart's prior success-- in dramatically driving down costs while simultaneously increasing access and quality may prove as challenging to Walmart and BSC Global as it did in Walmart's previous efforts to get disparate hospital operators to use a common EMR and sublimate their local brand to the Walmart clinic brand. Having an external technology operator from outside the U.S. may help Walmart in reaching and serving its global markets, but BSC's success in serving global retail, manufacturing, banking, financial services and legal customers is a lot easier than working with thousands of local U.S. healthcare providers. [Aside from the Veterans Administration Health System, the U.S. has no national providers of medical care. Walmart's past public announcements about talking with 400 hospitals anxious to open clinics should provide a lesson.] Further, many successful telecom, device, software and hardware companies have been unknowingly tripped up by FDA, FCC, HIPAA, CMS, Stark laws and myriad state licensing regulations. Picking the right test markets and operators will be critical to determining success--- and both company's ability to replicate it domestically and internationally. Game on. Ron Hammerle, Chairman and CEO Health Resources, Ltd. Tampa, Florida

R.HAMMERLE says:
Jun-08-2012 07:46 am

A logical and powerful addition that will continue to transform retail-point-of entry clinics and further extend Walmart's presence and influence in the healthcare industry. Despite relying upon local hospital operators for its early in-store medical clinics, expect the company to follow the same path it has with its optical (vision) centers. But the transformative potential lies in the company's partnership with Humana--the only U.S. health insurer with historic experience owning and operating outpatient and inpatient medical services. Ron Hammerle, Chairman Health Resources, Ltd. Tampa, Florida

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Report: Convenience, cost major factors in driving patients toward mHealth solutions

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — More patients are actively looking for and expecting to find mobile health solutions, according to the global Economist Intelligence Unit report, which was commissioned by PricewaterhouseCoopers and released Thursday.

Roughly one-half of patients surveyed for this report predict that mHealth will improve the convenience, cost and quality of their health care in the next three years. Meanwhile, 6-in-10 doctors and payers believe that its widespread adoption in their countries is inevitable in the near future.

The top three factors that would drive patients toward greater utilization of mHealth in managing their own healthcare — more convenient access (46%), lower healthcare costs (43%) and greater ability to manage individual health care (32%).

However, most experts who contributed to the study suggest that the transformation to a robust care-system utilizing mHealth tools will be slow-going. "Widespread adoption of mHealth will require changes in behavior of actors who are trying to protect their interests," the executive summary reads. "The challenge will be even greater for innovators because the improvements that mHealth can bring — such as patient-centered care and a greater focus on prevention — will involve disruption of how healthcare is provided. To succeed, innovators must maneuver through culturally conservative, highly regulated and fragmented yet often monopolistic systems that often provide contradictory incentives."

For the full 44-page report, click here.


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