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With U.S. Vision, Meijer to open 69 Meijer Optical centers

BY Michael Johnsen

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Meijer on Monday announced that it has selected U.S. Vision as its exclusive vision center in its stores moving forward in an effort to enhance its retail healthcare services across the Midwest.

U.S. Vision, a separately owned and operated company based in Glendora, N.J., is currently a tenant in 50 Meijer stores in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Ohio, and has plans to open 19 more vision centers in Meijer stores this year. All of its vision centers will be renamed “Meijer Optical” by the end of the month.

The effort enhances the retailer’s leadership in providing healthy living solutions to its customers, Meijer Drug Store VP Nat Love said. “As a family-focused company, Meijer believes in providing our customers with opportunities to address their healthcare needs in one stop,” he said. “The Meijer Optical shops will round out the robust services our stores already offer, including full-service pharmacies, health clinics and our free medication program, that meet our customers’ needs.”

U.S. Vision is a  provider of vision care products and services in the United States and Canada, and represents the sixth largest retail optical chain in the nation. Meijer began working with U.S. Vision in December 2011. 

The Meijer Optical shops are full-service vision care centers, offering brand name frames, contact lenses, sunglasses, ready-made readers and accessories. Optometrists will also be on hand to perform comprehensive eye exams. Most vision care plans are accepted.

 

 

 

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McKesson to host ideaShare 2014 in Orlando, Fla.

BY Michael Johnsen

SAN FRANCISCO — Registration is now open for McKesson ideaShare 2014, McKesson’s annual education and networking event for independent pharmacy owners from across the nation. This year’s conference will take place July 20–24, 2014, at the Gaylord Palms Resort in Orlando, Fla. For more than three decades, McKesson’s annual trade show and conference has provided opportunities for attendees to share best practices and learn about the latest trends, technology and clinical solutions to help them better serve their patients and achieve better pharmacy health.

“McKesson ideaShare offers community pharmacy owners and pharmacy staff a unique forum for learning from industry experts and sharing ideas with their peers so that they return to their pharmacy with fresh thinking on how to best serve their patients and improve their pharmacy’s profitability,” said Mark Walchirk, president, McKesson U.S. Pharmaceutical. “Community pharmacists play a critically important role in their patients’ journey toward better health, and McKesson is committed to being a trusted partner to community pharmacy.” 

Some of the highlights of McKesson ideaShare 2014 include:

  • Opening General Session: McKesson executives will discuss how McKesson is helping independent retail pharmacies achieve better pharmacy health and announce McKesson’s Pharmacy of the Year winners;
  • Public Policy Forum: McKesson’s SVP of public affairs, Ann Richardson Berkey, will share an overview of the federal and state policy landscape, including the issues most relevant to community pharmacy;
  • Health Mart Annual Meeting: Health Mart, which has more than 3,200 members, will host its Annual Meeting and facilitate discussion and planning groups at the event. Health Mart leaders will provide an update on the business and share how Health Mart continues to evolve to support the diverse needs of members, payers, providers and patients. Following the meeting, members can attend Health Mart University courses focused on local marketing and clinical care;
  • Seminars and Continuing Education courses: More than 30 Continuing Education courses will be available, including such topics as “How to Start a Pharmacy: Your Roadmap to Ownership,” “Coaching at the Counter — Opportunities for Enhancing Communication with a Patient-Centered Approach,” “Implementing Medication Synchronization,” and “Effective Pharmacy Management — What Others Are Doing That Really Works.” Additionally, there will be a variety of interactive seminars focused on helping pharmacies better serve their patients and build their business success, with special emphasis on clinical services, new drug therapies, merchandising and front-end performance, financial management and succession planning;
  • Ownership Transfer Luncheon: For the seventh year, McKesson’s RxOwnership team will host an interactive luncheon where attendees will analyze two pharmacy ownership case studies in small groups, share their thoughts, and learn the real-life outcome for each case study;
  • Trade Show Floor featuring more than 200 exhibitors: Hundreds of industry suppliers will present their newest products and services and offer special deals for retail pharmacy. Demonstrations of McKesson’s latest pharmacy automation and pharmacy-management technologies will be available. Attendees can learn more about McKesson’s portfolio of revenue-generating clinical services, such as medication therapy management, vaccination programs and award-winning behavioral counseling programs. Health Mart will debut its latest programs and solutions including local marketing tools and solutions designed to increase patient adherence and pharmacy performance. The Trade Show Floor will once again feature a full-size Health Mart model store, where attendees can experience the full capabilities of Health Mart and see the latest in design and décor; and
  • Final Night Party: To close out the week, attendees will head to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure.

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AmazonFresh launches new tool to revolutionize shopping list generation

BY Michael Johnsen

SEATTLE — AmazonFresh recently launched a new tool called the Amazon Dash that allows users to scan items or speak the items aloud as part of a new way to shop for groceries without having to go into the store or shop online. 

"Every member of the family can use Dash to easily add items to your AmazonFresh shopping list," AmazonFresh announced. "Keep it on your kitchen counter or hang it on the refrigerator. Did your kids just eat the last of the cereal? Conveniently refill and restock your home’s everyday essentials, and have fun doing it."

A small, stick-like device, the Dash has a built-in microphone that users can use to "voice search" the thousands of items available through Amazon. The Dash connects to the home’s Wi-Fi network and places the item in the virtual shopping cart. "Dash connects to your home Wi-Fi network and works directly with your AmazonFresh account. Say or scan items into your Dash, and then view the list on your desktop or mobile device to purchase and schedule delivery," the company said. 

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