PHARMACY

CVS Caremark Charitable Trust awards more than $6 million to nonprofits

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust announced on Thursday that it awarded $6.3 million to nonprofit organizations across the country in grants in 2009.

These grants align with CVS Caremark All Kids Can, a signature program focusing on children with disabilities, as well as provide support formedical services for the uninsured, grants to pharmacy schools, scholarships for the children of CVS Caremark colleagues and funding for community organizations for which CVS Caremark colleagues act as volunteers.

During a special nationwide “Day of Giving” on Thursday, company representatives — ranging from regional managers to corporate employees — visited nonprofits in seven states, from Arizona to Rhode Island, to personally present organizations with their grant checks. The grant recipients were chosen through the CVS Caremark Charitable Trust’s annual grant application process.

“We hope these much needed grants will enable these organizations to start the New Year off with renewed energy,” stated Eileen Howard Dunn, VP of CVS Caremark Charitable Trust. “The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust is proud to partner with them to make a difference in the lives of children with disabilities and their families and to promote health and wellness to those who need it most.”

For a complete list of recipients visit: http://info.cvscaremark.com/community/our-impact/charitable-trust/featured-recipients.

The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust will be accepting applications for 2010 grants from May 1 to June 15, 2010.

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Study: Some African-American diabetics at risk of developing retinal disease

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK African-American diabetics who consume large amounts of calories and sodium risk developing more severe retinal disease than those who don’t, according to a study published in the January issue of Archives of Ophthalmology.

Researchers at the New York University College of Dentistry and the New Jersey Medical School at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey examined 469 African-American patients with Type 1 diabetes who enrolled in the study between 1993 and 1998, administering eye exams, blood tests and a diet questionnaire after a six-year follow-up.

Those with the highest caloric intake at the beginning of the study were more likely to develop retinopathy leading to vision loss by the end of the six-year period, while those with high sodium intake had the highest risk of developing macular edema.

“In African American patients with Type 1 diabetes, high caloric and sodium intakes are significant and independent risk factors for progression to severe forms of diabetic retinopathy,” the authors wrote. “These results suggest that low caloric and sodium intakes in African American individuals with Type 1 diabetes mellitus may have a beneficial effect on the progression of diabetic retinopathy and thus might be part of dietary recommendations for this population.”

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Google.org to expand Google Flu Trends tracking

BY Michael Johnsen

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. Google.org on Tuesday announced on its blog site that it is expanding its Google Flu Trends tracking capabilities from the macro to the micro.

“We’ve been chatting with public health officials about new ways we can help people understand the spread of flu during this unusual time and today we’re excited to bring city level flu estimates to 121 cities in the United States,” the company wrote in its blog.

The city level estimates are “experimental,” the company cautioned, meaning they haven’t been validated against official data. However, the estimates are made in a similar manner to its U.S. national estimates, which have been validated.

In contrast to the unusually early spike of flu activity this October, Google Flu Trends is currently showing a low level of activity in the United States.

Google Flu Trends helps estimate flu trends in real time by tracking the popularity of certain Google search queries.

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