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Pharmacists demonstrate value of pharmacist-provided care via Capitol Hill health fair

BY Antoinette Alexander

WASHINGTON — More than 50 Washington, D.C.-area pharmacists and student pharmacists administered flu shots and performed free health screenings on Capitol Hill on Wednesday to demonstrate the value of pharmacist-provided patient care services.

The flu shots, medication consultations and health screenings — including bone density, body composition, glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure — were given to more than 200 members of Congress, staff, aides and the general public in the Rayburn Foyer of the House of Representatives.

“America’s pharmacists are highly qualified to optimize medication use as an integral and essential part of the healthcare team,” said APhA EVP and CEO Thomas Menighan. “APhA thanks all of the pharmacists and student pharmacists who eagerly volunteered for yesterday’s health fair. Their service is a clear indication that we’re not only prepared, but eager and willing to work as part of that team. This event was a key step in our quest to give consumers access to pharmacists’ services. By demonstrating for Congress the patient care services pharmacists provide in their communities every day, we ensure these important figures understand the essential role pharmacists play in improving patient care and the healthcare system.”

The Congressional Community Pharmacy Caucus, the American Pharmacists Association, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the National Community Pharmacists Association hosted the health fair.

Several Washington, D.C.-area pharmacies and schools of pharmacy provided time and support to showcase the services pharmacists are providing in their communities, including:

  • Howard University College of Pharmacy;
  • Notre Dame of Maryland University School of Pharmacy;
  • Shenandoah University Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy;
  • University of Maryland Eastern Shore School of Pharmacy;
  • University of Maryland School of Pharmacy; and
  • Walgreens.

“As co-chair of the House Community Pharmacy Caucus, I am proud to sponsor this event with Congressman Peter Welch in collaboration with the pharmacists who make a difference in the lives of patients every day,” said Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga., co-chair of the Congressional Community Pharmacy Caucus. “Our pharmacists are not only medication experts who ensure patients receive optimal attention when it comes to managing their medications, but they are also helping to provide access to care for Americans, particularly those in rural areas, by including the type of health screenings provided at today’s event.”

“Pharmacists are the only health are provider some people in will see on a regular basis. There are pharmacists and drugstores in almost every small, rural community, while physicians, nurse practitioners and hospitals may be many miles away,” said Rep. Brett Guthrie, Kentucky, lead co-sponsor of H.R 4190, a bi-partisan bill that would increase patient access to pharmacists’ patient care services.

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Loblaw modernizes President’s Choice message via new campaign

BY Antoinette Alexander

BRAMPTON, Ontario — Canada’s Loblaw Cos. is ushering in a new era for its President's Choice consumer packaged goods brand and launching the “most ambitious and comprehensive campaign in its history,” the retailer announced.

The campaign includes a modified brand position, a television and print campaign and a re-imagined digital and social media presence. It also has re-invented its pc.ca website, which now includes a focus on lively content, a custom online community for food discussions and a regionalized Canadian food-trend tracker, the Food Pulse Index, created through a new initiative with Google Canada.  

"The President's Choice brand has led and served Canadian taste buds and food interests for three decades," said Galen Weston, executive chairman and president of Loblaw. "We've never witnessed a time when our role as a food manufacturer and retailer has meant more. The modernization of our brand will mean more food innovation, greater consciousness around product sourcing and ingredients, and a heartier dialogue with Canadians who share our excitement and curiosity."

Marketing of the “Crave More” rallying cry begins on Thursday with a 60-second ad celebrating food discovery — from the first time someone harvested honey from a buzzing hive, heated corn until it popped, and more. The ad closes with Weston in the President's Choice kitchen declaring, "If you don't search for more, you'll never find it."  This ad will be followed by a second, which celebrates the natural colors of food and the removal of all artificial colors and flavors from all President's Choice products. The campaign includes television, print, digital, out-of-home, public relations and social media activities.

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Kroger raises quarterly dividend by 12%

BY Michael Johnsen

CINCINNATI — Kroger on Thursday raised the quarterly dividend by 12%, to 18.5 cents per share, to be paid on Dec. 1 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Nov. 14.
 
"This increase reflects our board of directors' confidence that Kroger's accelerated growth plan will both enhance our 'Customer 1st' strategy and deliver long-term growth investors can count on," said Rodney McMullen, Kroger CEO. "Kroger has returned more than $10 billion to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases since we reinstated dividends in 2006."
 
Kroger has delivered double-digit compound growth in its dividend since it was reinstated in 2006. The company continues to expect an increasing dividend over time. 
 
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