Two of the industry’s largest drug store chains have initiated efforts to help their customers stay safe in the sun this summer.

Rite Aid, Rexall, sun protection, Sun Awareness Days, sun care, skin cancer screenings, skin care, Richard Monks, drug chains, drug store, health and wellness, Katz Group, Skin Cancer Foundation, special UV camera, sun damage, Tracey Phillips, pharmacy services, Air Miles Reward Program

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Inside This Issue - News

Two drug chains put focus on sun protection

June 27th, 2011

NEW YORK – Two of the industry’s largest drug store chains have initiated efforts to help their customers stay safe in the sun this summer.

Earlier this month Rite Aid Corp. launched a healthy skin care campaign in partnership with the Skin Cancer Foundation, while the Katz Group’s Rexall chain began holding Sun Awareness Days in its stores in Ontario.

The Rite Aid initiative, which runs until July 26, is the drug chain’s latest effort to provide its customers with free information on health and wellness topics. In the past Rite Aid has focused on such areas as oral health, diabetes, weight management, heart health and ­allergies.

The chain’s sun care program includes the distribution of free informational guides in all 4,700 of the company’s stores and online, money-saving promotions on skin care products in the store and online, a national tour featuring free full-body skin cancer screenings at more than 60 Rite Aid stores in 19 states, and advice from Rite Aid ­pharmacists.

Executives say that the main emphasis of the campaign is helping to prevent skin cancer.
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, about 90% of nonmelanoma skin cancers and 65% of melanoma cases result from overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.

Meanwhile, Rexall stores in Ontario are holding Sun Awareness Days, where shoppers can book a consultation with a pharmacist and have a photo taken with a special UV camera that detects potential areas of sun damage on the face.

A spokeswoman explains that the photo lets customers see firsthand the areas of potential concern and learn how they can protect themselves best.

Rexall is being joined in the program by the Air Miles Reward Program, a nationwide loyalty program offered by a wide range of retail outlets. Shoppers at Katz’ Rexall and Rexall Pharma Plus stores earn one bonus mile on every summer skin care purchase of $10.

Offering sun care advice in a community pharmacy makes sense, Rexall executives say. A recent survey of consumers in Canada showed that pharmacists ranked second to physicians as the most trusted source of sun protection ­information.

“We’re happy to hear that Canadians see the value in tapping into their local pharmacist as a resource for information on sun protection,” Rexall director of pharmacy services and marketing Tracey Phillips says. “It is very important for Canadians to be aware of the effects of unprotected sun exposure. In fact, it is estimated that between 60% and 70% of skin cancer cases are entirely preventable.”