PHARMACY

Reader confronts need for clinics

BY Rob Eder


In response to the news last month that Rite Aid named Tony Montini EVP merchandising, DSN shared this exchange with an online reader:


Dear DSN;


I am a Rite Aid pharmacist in the small desert town of Needles, Calif. Needles is a poor town with a lot of our business being Medi-Cal — state Medicaid. … This is the rub: There are no Medi-Cal providers in the city! Most people have to go to the emergency room, or those with Medicare D plans [travel] 20 miles across the Colorado River to Arizona. …


Does Rite Aid have any stores with medical clinics in them? I know if there was a clinic in our store, or even in our business complex, our volume would soar. … Really, it would open up a new world for our store if the people had access to a Medi-Cal provider — not to mention the traffic from travelers on Interstate 40. Could you, DSN, relay this message to Mr. Montini?


Sincerely,

William M. Garner, Pharmacist, Rite Aid



Dear William,


Thanks for your feedback. We will pass on your suggestion. In spirit, we agree with your comments — we believe America needs more retail clinics in general, and I am certain the community in which you live and work is no exception. 


That said, Rite Aid does operate clinics in California, including seven Lindora Clinics in southern California and three Sutter Express Clinics in the Sacramento area. 


Best wishes,

Rob Eder, Editor-in-chief, DSN


In fairness, DSN did forward Garner’s comments to Mr. Montini, who previously had already seen them on DrugStoreNews.com and sent them along to his colleagues in pharmacy. 


There are a number of things about this exchange that pleased me. First, it means that our integrated print-digital platform is serving users in real time.


But it also serves as an indication of the value the bench-level pharmacist sees in the in-store clinic model. DSN believes that together, these two important healthcare professionals — the pharmacist and the nurse practitioner/physician assistant — operating in a community pharmacy setting are critical components of real health reform.


It is a key reason we have chosen to add a special collaborative care track to our annual Retail Clinician Education Congress this August. If you operate clinics in any of your stores, I strongly encourage you to send some of your key pharmacists and/or pharmacy managers to the conference this year to learn more about how to bring these two important healthcare providers closer together to drive better patient outcomes. Contact me at reder@lf.com to learn more.

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PHARMACY

Logos are in the eye of the beholder

BY Rob Eder

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — Another story this week is a reminder of how important even the most subtle finesses of a corporate logo can be in the minds of the consumer.

(THE NEWS: Wegmans leaves ‘circle W’ to Walgreens. For the full story, click here)

The creator of the CVS/pharmacy logo died earlier this week. The story was a reminder of how powerful three letters and a ‘forward-slash’ can be. The now iconic logo was instrumental in the rebranding of the original Consumer Value Store as CVS, and what that meant in terms of the shift from a value-driven health and beauty aids/general merchandise store to a pharmacy. Today those three letters have become somewhat synonymous with the word "pharmacy" in the minds of consumers.

It also reminds DSN of another entertaining story about how the former super-regional chain known as Longs (now part of CVS) came to drop the apostrophe in its name: the signs were $50 cheaper without the punctuation mark, a savings founders Thomas and Joseph Long couldn’t pass up.

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Report: Many Type 1 diabetics have other immune diseases

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Many children with Type 1 diabetes have other autoimmune disorders as well, according to published reports.

Citing findings in a recent study of nearly 500 children published in the journal Diabetes Care, Reuters reported that one-third of children with the disease — an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks the cells of the pancreas — also have such disorders as celiac disease, autoimmune thyroid disease and a disorder of the adrenal glands called Addison’s disease.

For example, one-quarter of the children had antibodies related to thyroid disease, while one-eighth of those children had the disease; one-eighth of the children had the antibodies for celiac disease, while one-quarter of those children had the disease.

About 25.8 million Americans have diabetes, and Type 1 diabetes accounts for about 5% of all diagnosed cases in adults, according to the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, part of the National Institutes of Health.

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