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Novartis builds CML community

BY DSN STAFF

BASEL, Switzerland CMLalliance.com and CMLearth.com—both powered by Novartis Oncology.—Chronic myeloid leukemia includes among its ranks NBA’s all-time leading scorer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who partnered with Novartis Oncology in November in promoting two valuable online resources in contending with the disease:

CML Alliance offers helpful disease education and information about how treatments work to fight this cancer, the testing that is done to monitor treatment response and information on reimbursement support. CML Earth, launched in December 2008, is a unique interactive social networking Web site that allows CML patients to connect with one another across the globe. The evolving community helps patients find and connect with other patients of similar interest, as well as tell inspirational stories and receive support from the broader public. The site also offers patients a valuable resource by connecting them to patient advocacy groups for further support.

“I’m telling my story to encourage fellow patients to take charge of their health—work closely with your doctor, monitor your disease and treatment responses through regular blood level testing, and, above all, take your medicine,” Abdul-Jabbar stated in a Nov. 10 press release.

Both CML Alliance and Abdul-Jabbar in his capacity as “CML patient and advocate” have Facebook fan pages, as well.

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Hy-Vee names new president

BY Alaric DeArment

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa A 28-year employee of Hy-Vee has become its new president, according to published reports.

The company appointed Randall Edeker as president of the supermarket chain Thursday at the company’s annual meeting, succeeding Ric Jurgens, who had served as president since 2001 and will maintain his position as chairman and CEO.

Edeker had previously served as EVP and COO.

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Tricare expands vaccination coverage to pharmacies, clinics

BY DSN STAFF

NEW YORK Convenience and value. That’s what community pharmacy and their retail clinic partners deliver to their patients. And that’s what the Department of Defense is counting on in covering immunizations at local pharmacies and identifying convenient care clinics as network providers — two separate pieces of news issued within the past month that really underscore the importance of pharmacies and retail clinics in the delivery of health care today.

Prior to these announcements, military personnel interested in getting their flu shots had to schedule an appointment with their doctor, as Tricare only covered the cost of shots delivered in a doctor’s office.

“As a convenient and accessible healthcare provider, pharmacy is uniquely positioned to offer services for patients, such as vaccinations,” stated Steve Anderson, president and CEO for the National Association of Chain Drug Stores. Anderson noted that as of earlier this year, pharmacists have the ability to immunize patients in all 50 states. “[This] presents an important opportunity for pharmacists to counsel patients during their visit, and an additional healthcare provider from which to obtain these vaccinations.”

It’s also quite a bit of opportunity for pharmacy — Tricare provides healthcare coverage for 9.5 million eligible beneficiaries. Those beneficiaries pick up almost 2.3 million prescriptions every week, and 1.2 million of those at retail pharmacies, according to Tricare .

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