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Walgreens, Arizona Priority Care collaborate for population health management

BY Antoinette Alexander

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens and Arizona Priority Care have announced a clinical care collaboration agreement to provide coordinated, expanded services for AzPC Medicare Advantage and ACO members through select Walgreens pharmacies and Healthcare Clinics.
 


The collaborative model brings Walgreens pharmacists and Healthcare Clinic nurse practitioners together with AzPC providers to further coordinate patient care, while giving AzPC members access to a broad range of health care services at select Walgreens.  The program aims to improve patient care while reducing overall costs.
 


“Coordinated care programs are vitally important to help ensure patients have access to the quality care they need, especially in today’s health care environment,” stated Jeffrey Kang, Walgreens SVP of health and wellness services and solutions. “Walgreens brings an expansive retail footprint and diverse portfolio of health care assets and services, and AzPC has long been a leader in providing accountable, coordinated care to its members.  This collaboration further demonstrates the value we provide in partnering with others in the medical community to close critical gaps in care to help further improve patient outcomes.”
 


“We see this collaboration with Walgreens as part of our ongoing strategy of seamlessly providing better ways to keep our members healthy, while lowering health care costs” added Richard Merkin, CEO of AzPC. “This relationship will allow our Arizona members to conveniently access community-based health care services at select Walgreens locations.  We see this as a model for how affordable health care could be more effectively delivered in the U.S., and we are proud to be piloting this type of innovative effort with Walgreens.” 



Walgreens and AzPC will collaborate on a number of clinical and preventive health services aimed at extending physicians’ efforts to provide population health services with the support of Walgreens pharmacy and medication management services.  Some of the collaborative services offered to AzPC members include:
 


  • Medication management – includes MTM and adherence programs;
  • 
Health risk assessments and health testing, including cholesterol and blood pressure;
  • 
Immunizations; and
  • 
Patient education and wellness services.

 

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Report: Target sets sights on Millennials with digital initiatives

BY Antoinette Alexander

MINNEAPOLIS — Target is striving to win the hearts of Millennials with a string of new mobile and digital initiatives, which includes an overhaul of its wedding and baby registry business, according to a USA Today report.

The article also noted that, in the company’s recently launched ad campaign promoting its digital services, it heavily marketed the new features to young couples and families.

Also, in the store, Target will replace all in-store registry kiosks, primarily used for weddings and baby showers, with iPads connected to Target.com. And scanning guns will be replaced with iPod touches, the article stated.

 

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Senate forum to tackle heroin, opioid addiction

BY Antoinette Alexander

WASHINGTON — As the heroin and opioid epidemic spreads through communities across the United States, Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, will hold a forum on Wednesday to discuss opioid addiction, focusing on the use of buprenorphine to help combat opioid abuse and the obstacles that have prevented even more patients from getting buprenorphine treatment. 



The senators have heard from many physicians who have said that buprenorphine has been highly successful in treating patients with heroin and opioid addiction, but the doctors stress that many more patients could benefit from the medication. The senators will hear from health professionals who will share their thoughts on addressing the impediments that have hindered the treatment of more patients, including patient limits imposed on doctors, waiting lists, costs, and shortage of certified doctors. They will discuss proposals that could help expand access to treatment.
 


Participants in the forum include Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse; Westley Clark, director of the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment at SAMHSA; Elinore McCance-Katz, SAMHSA’s chief medical officer; Michael Botticelli, acting director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy; Andrew Kolodny, chief medical officer of Phoenix House; Colleen LaBelle, program director State OBOT B and Boston Medical Center; John Kitzmiller, a physician and certified buprenorphine provider from Lake Orion, Mich.; and other physicians, addiction experts, and buprenorphine patients.
 


Levin and Hatch have long been involved in the effort to expand buprenorphine treatment. The senators sponsored a 2000 law, the Drug Addiction Treatment Act, which made it legal for physicians to prescribe buprenorphine in their offices, and the FDA approved its use in 2002.  

DATA 2000 established a 30-patient limit for doctors, however, which experts later found to unduly limit access to the medication. Levin and Hatch held a 2006 forum to examine the patient limit, and they subsequently authored successful legislation to raise the limit to 100 patients.

 

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