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Rate of breast, cervical and colon cancer screenings flat

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK Not enough Americans are getting screenings for breast, cervical and colon cancer, according to a study.

The study, which the American Cancer Society released Thursday, found that the rate at which women receive screens for cervical and breast cancers has barely changed since 2000; the rate of colorectal cancer screenings has increased somewhat, but not very much.

Slightly more than half of men and women aged 50 to 64, and 57.6% aged 65 and older, receive colonoscopies on a regular basis. Slightly more than 60% of women aged 40 to 64 have regular mammograms, compared to less than 60% of those aged 65 and older.

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Publix to open 1,000th store Feb. 5

BY Michael Johnsen

LAKELAND, Fla. Publix will open the doors to store No. 1,000 on Feb. 5, the grocer announced Thursday. The latest addition to Publix, which will stand at 54,000 sq. ft., will include a pharmacy, bakery, deli and floral and fresh seafood departments.

“We are proud of our 79-year history, rich in providing superior customer service and delivering a high-quality selection of foods, products and services,” stated Publix president Todd Jones.

Opening day festivities will begin with a performance by the St. John’s Academy of the Arts choral group. To commemorate the milestone, Publix will grant eight local area schools $1,000 each to use toward the purchase of school supplies.

According to the company, the Florida Historical Society will be on-hand to recognize and document Publix’ milestone.

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Eli Lilly agrees to settlement over alleged mispromotion of Zyprexa

BY Alaric DeArment

WASHINGTON Drug maker Eli Lilly & Co. has agreed to pay $1.415 billion to resolve allegations that it promoted the antipsychotic drug Zyprexa for unapproved uses.

The Department of Justice announced Thursday that the Indianapolis-based company would pay a $515 million criminal fine (the largest ever in a healthcare case and the largest criminal fine ever imposed on an individual corporation) and up to $800 million in a civil settlement with the federal government and the states. It will also forfeit assets of $100 million.

The settlement will resolve criminal and civil allegations that Lilly promoted Zyprexa (olanzapine) for uses not approved by the Food and Drug Administration, including treatment of dementia in elderly people. 

In a plea agreement, the company has admitted its guilt to a misdemeanor charge. It also signed a civil settlement to resolve claims that by marketing the drug for off-label uses, it caused the submission of false payment claims to federal health insurance plans such as Medicaid, TRICARE and the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program.

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