PHARMACY

Rite Aid promotes heart health for American Heart Month

BY Alaric DeArment

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid is promoting heart health to mark American Heart Month in February.

The retail pharmacy chain announced Wednesday that it would distribute 12-page Heart Health guides and offer counseling with pharmacists and collect money for the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement by selling red dress paper pinups.

"In many cases, the path to a healthier heart begins with just a few simple lifestyle changes," Rite Aid EVP pharmacy Robert Thompson said. "Rite Aid’s free 12-page Heart Health guide was developed with the American Heart Association and is a great first step on the path to better heart health. With the help and support of Rite Aid pharmacists, our customers can commit to and achieve their heart health goals all year long."

According to the AHA, 80% of heart disease and stroke cases can be prevented, but cardiovascular disease affects more than 1-in-3 adults and is the number-one killer of women in the United States.


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PHARMACY

Costco offers Aetna insurance to California members

BY Alaric DeArment

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. — Aetna is offering individual health insurance plans to Costco members in California, the health insurer said.

The Costco Personal Health Insurance program includes five plans and offers broad medical benefits, dental options and a large network of doctors and hospitals. The program also is available to members of the club retailer in Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia. Aetna plans to expand the program to other markets in the coming months.

"We recognize the importance of providing affordable health solutions that deliver value and convenience to individuals and families," Aetna head of individual business Barbara DeMaio said. "We are proud to join with a respected retailer like Costco to provide health insurance options to their members in California."

Aetna said Costco was providing such benefits as lower copays on prescriptions at Costco pharmacies to members, and plans include special features and lower monthly premiums negotiated only for Costco members.

"There are a variety of plan types to choose from, each offering the right combination of quality, value and special members-only benefits," Costco director of insurance services John Conlon said.


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Estrogen patch, described as smallest, available at pharmacies

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — A patch for treating menopause that the manufacturer calls the smallest is now available.

Noven Pharmaceuticals announced the availability of Minivelle (estradiol) transdermal system in pharmacies. The patch, which the Food and Drug Administration approved in October 2012, is designed for treating hot flashes and night sweats in women with menopause.

The patch has a surface area nearly the same as a dime at its lowest strength of 0.0375 mg-per-day and is 34% smaller than Noven’s Vivelle-Dot patch, the company said.


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