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Sequester will hamper disease-prevention efforts, report warns

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Automatic spending cuts stemming from the failure of Congress and the White House to reach a budget deal will likely harm the disease-preventing capabilities of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to a new report.

GlobalData, a market research and analytics firm, said the slashing of the CDC’s funding by $450 million, or 8%, due to the sequester would both hamper its ability to prevent infectious diseases through immunization, surveillance and response programs while also failing to accomplish the goal of decreasing federal spending.

"The incidence of chronic infections, such as viral hepatitis, HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases also would be expected to increase with the elimination of prevention programs," GlobalData infectious disease analyst Christopher Pace said, adding that disease prevention is one of the most economically viable methods for reducing long-term healthcare costs. "These chronic infections require lifelong treatment that can become expensive."

According to the American Public Health Association, reducing the CDC’s ability to prevent diseases means that 30,000 children and 20,000 adults won’t be vaccinated against preventable diseases like whooping cough, measles, tetanus and tuberculosis. The drug industry also will be affected, as a report by the Senate Appropriations Committee Majority Staff estimates that about 650,000 fewer people will be tested for HIV, and 12,000 fewer uninsured patients with HIV will receive therapy this year. This, the report found, could push providers toward lower-cost therapies, decreasing demand for more expensive ones.

"The resulting increase in the incidence of preventable foodborne and infectious disease illnesses would increase the demand for therapeutics, such as antiviral and antimicrobial drugs," GlobalData infectious disease analyst Brad Tebbets said. "This market growth would likely cost taxpayers more in the long term, both fiscally and physically, than any of the perceived short-term savings that would be realized as part of the sequestration." 

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Supervalu further solidifies new leadership team following AB Acquisition deal

BY Michael Johnsen

MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu on Monday morning announced several changes to its executive and banner retail leadership teams, as it continues preparations to move forward with a focus on serving wholesale grocery operators, growing its hard discount format and running a smaller, more efficient retail operation following the close of its previously announced transaction with AB Acquisition (Albertson’s LLC). 

Mark Van Buskirk has been named EVP, merchandising and marketing for Supervalu, where he will be responsible for overseeing companywide retail merchandising and marketing efforts, along with directing Supervalu’s private brand offerings and retail pharmacy teams. He spent the past 20 years in leadership positions with Kroger, most recently serving as VP, meat and seafood merchandising and procurement.

Rob Woseth has been named EVP, chief strategy officer. In addition to overseeing real estate and corporate development, Woseth will focus on identifying strategic growth opportunities that support independent grocers, as well as working with banner leadership to build and maximize the company’s traditional and discount retail businesses. He spent the past 10 years in business development, strategy and leadership positions with Albertsons Inc. and Albertsons, LLC.

Steve Fox has joined Supervalu in the role of SVP, food merchandising, reporting to Van Buskirk. He comes to Supervalu after spending 41 years in retail leadership positions with Fred Meyer, a division of Kroger. During his tenure with Fred Meyer, Fox spent 10 years as VP produce merchandising/procurement and 11 years as VP grocery merchandising/procurement.

All three appointments are effective immediately, Supervalu noted. 

Ritchie Casteel was named president and CEO of Save-A-Lot, effective immediately. Casteel has more than 40 years of experience in retail, including over 30 years in a variety of leadership positions with the original Albertsons Inc., where he finished his tenure as VP operations for Albertsons’ Intermountain West Division.

Casteel also served as director of sales and operations for Grocery Outlet from 2005-2009 where he worked closely with independent owner operators to improve sales, margin, shrink, marketing, expense controls and financial balance. Casteel replaces Santiago Roces who will remain with the company over the next several weeks to assist Casteel in ensuring a smooth and efficient transition.

The deal between Supervalu and AB Acquisition is expected to be completed the week of March 18, Supervalu stated. 

Following the transaction, Supervalu will retain five regional retail banners: CUB Foods based in Minnesota; Hornbacher’s in North Dakota; Farm Fresh in Virginia; Shop ‘N Save in St. Louis; and Shoppers in Baltimore/Washington DC. Together these banners operate 191 traditional retail grocery stores and represent slightly more than 25% of the company’s anticipated revenues after the banner sale is complete. Supevalu named the following banner presidents who will report directly to Supervalu CEO Sam Duncan.

Eric Hymas has been named president of Shop ‘N Save, replacing Marlene Gebhard who will remain with the company over the next several weeks to assist Hymas in the transition. Hymas most recently served as SVP merchandising for Supervalu, which included responsibility for all categories across center store, as well as beverages, fuel and convenience, and fresh departments. Hymas has more than 30 years of experience in grocery retail having started his career in an Albertsons store in Idaho Falls, ID.

Bill Parker has been named president, Farm Fresh, after serving for the past seven months in the role of interim president. His appointment is effective immediately.

Brian Audette will continue as president of CUB Food; Matt Leiseth will continue as president of Hornbacher’s; and Bob Bly will continue as president of Shoppers.

Today’s announcement also includes news of several current executives who will depart the company upon completion of the transaction. They include:

  • Kevin Holt – president, Supervalu Retail;
  • Tim Lowe – EVP merchandising; and
  • Michael Moore – EVP and chief marketing officer. 

“I thank Kevin for his leadership over our retail teams, as well as Tim and Michael for the work they have done leading our retail merchandising and marketing efforts, respectively,” Duncan said. “They have helped ready the business for the future and I appreciate all they have done to ensure a smooth transition. I wish each of them well with their future endeavors.”

Also departing is president pharmacy Chris Dimos, as reported last week by DSN

 

 

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Reports: Doctors to serve as medical directors for two N.Y. MinuteClinic locations

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — A hospital system on Long Island in New York state has a partnership with CVS’ MinuteClinic, according to published reports.

Newsday reported that doctors from North Shore-LIJ Health System would serve as medical directors for clinics at CVS stores in Bellport and Syosset, N.Y. According to the report, Long Islanders should expect to see more clinics in the future, noting "good care that is affordable and easily accessible is the wave of the future."

The newspaper, which covers Long Island, reported that the doctors would be available for consultations with the clinics’ nurse practitioners, who could then refer patients to doctors or hospitals. It also reported that the two clinics were a precursor for more in retail stores around the island, and Long Islanders should expect to see more clinics in the future, noting "good care that is affordable and easily accessible is the wave if the future."


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