Take Care plans to open retail clinics in Massachusetts
BOSTON Months after the convenient care industry celebrated a victory in Massachusetts, as state health officials approved regulations allowing for limited-service medical clinics—a move sparked by CVS’ application to open MinuteClinics in the state—Take Care Health Systems has confirmed plans to also open retail-based clinics in Massachusetts.
According to Take Care Health Systems spokeswoman Lauren Tierney, the Walgreens-owned clinic operator plans to enter the Boston metro area this year; however, it has not yet disclosed timing or location details.
As previously reported by Drug Store News, Take Care plans to have more than 400 clinics within Walgreens stores by the end of 2008. Take Care currently operates more than 150 in-store clinics.
In January, state health officials approved regulations allowing for limited service medical clinics, marking the end of a long review process that included two public hearings and the submission of hundreds of pages oftestimony regarding the regulations.
Sparking the move to create specialized regulations: CVS’ application to open a MinuteClinic in one of its stores in Weymouth
According to the state Public Health Council, early in the application review process it became clear that Department of Public Health regulations governing medical clinics did not address the operation of medical clinicswith limited scope of services. Rather than consider applications requiring numerous waivers from full-service clinic regulations, the department decided to create a specialized set of rules.
MinuteClinic has since stated that it plans to operate about 120 in-store clinics across the state over the next few years.
JPMA refutes media reports about dangers of baby bottle materials
MT. LAUREL, N.J. The media has been asked by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association to halt stories with claims of purported negative health effects from using baby products containing bisphenol A (BPA). JPMA claims that statements of ill health linked to items containing BPA are often misleading and frighten consumers.
According to JPMA, research has shown that when used properly, products made with BPA do not pose a health threat.
Robert Waller, Jr., the president of JPMA, said, “JPMA is extremely disappointed in the media for speculating that Health Canada’s assessment of BPA would recommend labeling the chemical a dangerous substance, when in fact the report has not even been issued yet.”
Claims in the media have stated that risk may come from the plastic shields on pacifiers, parts of baby bottles or sippy cups being broken down or chewed, and then ingested with food or saliva. Scientific findings indicate that BPA may cause estrogenic effects in laboratory animals, and so concerns about the safety of baby products, especially bottles, has been under scrutiny.
JPMA, whose mission is to educate consumers and industry professionals about juvenile products and safety, is referring consumers to its Web site, www.babybottles.org, for more information on BPA and related health findings.
American Greetings reports fiscal 2008 profit
CLEVELAND American Greetings generated $83.3 million in earnings for fiscal 2008, including $15.6 million in the fourth quarter ended Feb. 29, and more than $1.77 billion in total sales for year. Total sales were down about 1 percent from $1.79 billion the previous year, but earnings were up 96 percent from $42.4 million.
“I’m pleased we were able to achieve earnings within our forecasted range and exceed our cash flow guidance,” said American Greetings chief executive officer Zev Weiss. “Our strong cash flow allowed us to make two acquisitions in the digital photo space and repurchase shares.”