PHARMACY

Rite Aid stores to host Diabetes Solutions Days this week

BY Michael Johnsen

CAMP HILL, Pa. Nearly 300 Rite Aid stores will host Diabetes Solutions Days on Nov. 11 and 13, providing patients living with diabetes valuable screenings, product samples and coupons and solutions to help them take the best care of themselves, the Pennsylvania retailer announced Monday.

“Rite Aid is committed to being the pharmacy of choice for patients with diabetes and offering the products, services and resources to help them live well,” Robert Thompson, Rite Aid senior vice president of pharmacy, said. “The Diabetes Solutions Days events are just one example of our focus on diabetes management, education and awareness.”

During the Diabetes Solutions Days events, flu shots will be offered for $30 and pneumonia shots for $45, free blood pressure screenings and entry into a raffle for a $50 Rite Aid gift card drawing at each location.

The free events are part of Rite Aid’s focus on diabetes management. A free 16-page Diabetes Guide, developed with the American Diabetes Association, is available in all Rite Aid stores and identifies the risk factors for pre-diabetes and diabetes. It includes important information on weight management and eating smart and features diabetes-friendly recipes. The guide also provides advice and safe treatment options on health conditions like gum disease, dry eyes and wound and foot care, all of which can be especially harmful to people with diabetes if left untreated.

During the month of November, all Rite Aid stores are selling $1 American Diabetes Association pin-ups, with all proceeds going directly to the American Diabetes Association for diabetes research, information and advocacy initiatives.

www.riteaiddiabetes.com, a Rite Aid Web site dedicated to diabetes education and awareness, is available year round. Rite Aid’s comprehensive diabetes Web site features tips on managing and living with diabetes, educational articles on topics including nutrition, foot care and blood glucose monitoring, frequently asked questions and a section devoted to family and caregivers.

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PHARMACY

New collaboration to spotlight diabetes self-management

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Department of Health and Human Services on Thursday announced a collaboration with the American Diabetes Association and the Patient Education Research Center at the Stanford University School of Medicine to increase the number of diabetes self-management training programs in the United States.

This collaboration, which will have a particular focus on Hispanic people with Medicare,  supports HHS’ Interagency Hispanic Elder Initiative. That initiative, launched in 2007, seeks to improve the health of Hispanic senior populations, and has identified diabetes as a primary issue of concern for Hispanic seniors.

“Although Medicare covers diabetes self-management training, there is a shortage of programs nationwide, especially for Spanish-speaking seniors, “ stated Kerry Weems, acting administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. “This new collaboration will increase the number of programs, including those focused on the needs of Hispanic seniors.”

Approximately 18 percent of all Medicare beneficiaries have diabetes. Hispanic beneficiaries are particularly susceptible to the disease and are more than four times likely than non-Hispanics age 65 and over to experience a hospital admission due to uncontrolled diabetes. 

Under the new collaboration, the organizations will work with eight communities across the country with high concentrations of Hispanic seniors to implement a new ADA-certified recognized program specifically designed for Spanish-speaking individuals. The communities are: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, McAllen, Texas; Miami, New York, San Antonio and San Diego.

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Johns Hopkins’ study calls for broader use of HPV vaccines

BY Michael Johnsen

BALTIMORE A call to explore a broader use of human papillomavirus vaccines and the validation of a simple oral screening test for HPV-caused oral cancers are reported in two studies by a Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center investigator, the medical center announced Nov. 3.

Leading HPV expert Maura Gillison, the first to identify HPV infection as the cause of certain oral cancers and who identified multiple sex partners as the most important risk factor for these cancers, reports her latest work in the Nov. 3 journal Clinical Cancer Research and in a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention monograph. The CDC report on HPV-associated cancers appears online Nov. 3 and in the Nov. 15 supplement edition of Cancer.

In the CDC report, Gillison found approximately 20,000 cases of cancer in the United States each year are caused by HPV infection. Oral cancers are the second most common type of HPV-associated cancers and are increasing in incidence in the United States, particularly among men. Add to that anal, penile, vaginal and vulvar cancers that also are linked to HPV infection, and Gillison says these cancers, when combined, equal the number of cervical cancers, the most common and well known of the cancers caused by HPV.

While about one-quarter of HPV-linked cancers occur in men, vaccines currently are approved only for use in girls and young women for cervical cancer prevention. “We need to have a more comprehensive discussion of the potential impact the HPV vaccine could have on cancer rates among men and women in this country,” commented Gillison, associate professor of oncology at Johns Hopkins Medicine. “Currently available HPV vaccines have the potential to reduce the rates of HPV-associated cancers, like oral and anal cancers, that are currently on the rise and for which there no effective or widely-applied screening programs.” Gillison noted, however, that studies are needed to confirm that the vaccine effectively prevents HPV infections that lead to oral and anal cancers.

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