News

MarkeTouch COVID-19 Clinical and Operations Pharmacy Newsletter (July 21)

COVID-19 continues to impact people and economies here in the U.S and worldwide. Just as there is a need to predict the weather to keep us safe, there is a need for forecasting tools for COVID-19 that can be used to improve awareness about the spread of infection, distribute vaccine and mobilize the appropriate healthcare responses. Did you know that such a forecasting tool exists and is being used by health experts here in the U.S. and around the globe?
Marketouch
July 22, 2021
News

Lapis Lazuli – Vaccine Workflow: To Schedule or Not to Schedule?

While pharmacies have been giving immunizations for many age groups for many years, doing it in a pandemic with physical distancing and additional pandemic restrictions was new in 2020 and continues to evolve in 2021. Vaccinations are vital public health interventions that pharmacies provide but have multiple barriers to implementation.
Marketouch
July 1, 2021
News

MarkeTouch COVID-19 Clinical and Operations Pharmacy Newsletter (June 24)

On April 1, 2021, Houston Methodist Hospital announced a policy requiring employees be vaccinated against COVID-19 by June 7, 2021, starting with the leadership and then inoculating the remaining workers, all at its expense. 117 employees sued to block the vaccination requirement tied to employment termination. Employees argued that that the hospital is forcing its employees to be vaccinated or be fired, which they claimed was illegal.
Marketouch
June 24, 2021
News

Lapis Lazuli – US Supreme Court Provides Ruling On Text Messages

In 1991 when The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was enacted, it was put into place to protect consumers from a rampant growth in the number of telephone marketing calls, unsolicited or otherwise. Three decades ago, most consumers were using landline phones and the world's first text message wouldn’t be sent until a year later in December 1992. Needless to say, in 1991, Congress could not possibly know about the evolution of the mobile phone nor the advent of sending messages by SMS/text. For the past ten plus years, courts have been clarifying what the TCPA protects and how. Violations of TCPA can result in fines of up to $1,500 per incident/call and multimillion-dollar judgments against violators have been levied. Keeping up to date on what is permissible and what is not is vital to any organization. ATDS Ambiguity An Automated Telephone Dialing System (ATDS) is defined in the TCPA as “equipment which has the capacity—(A) to store or produce telephone numbers to be called, using a random or sequential number generator; and (B) to dial such numbers.” In 2015, the FCC released a Declaratory Ruling that stated “a piece of equipment can possess the requisite ‘capacity’ to satisfy the statutory definition of ‘autodialer’ even if, for example, it requires the addition of software to actually perform the functions described in the definition.” The ambiguity of these two sentences resulted in many lawsuits, fines, and settlements. SCOTUS ATDS Decision On April 1, 2021, the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) issued a ruling on one particularly confusing and litigious aspect of the TCPA: what is or is not an ATDS. Previous lower courts were split on their interpretation of the breadth and definition of what was an ATDS. So, SCOTUS reviewed the language and intent of Congress when they were writing the TCPA and issued a unanimous decision specifically related to ATDS. SCOTUS ruled that SMS/text messages would not violate TCPA if the system sending them was not an ATDS and if the sender has an existing relationship with the recipient. Ok... but what exactly qualifies as an ATDS? SCOTUS went on to further clarify the definition of an autodialer. To be an ATDS, the system or equipment generating phone numbers to dial/text must use a random or sequential number generator. Read the full SCOTUS opinion here. SCOTUS ATDS Decision Impact on Healthcare and Pharmacy The SCOTUS opinion is beneficial for healthcare entities and pharmacies: It will reduce deceptive TCPA class action complaints from predatory lawyersIt clarifies, at the federal level, that an organization no longer needs to secure consumer consent prior to sending SMS/text messages if the consumer data that they are using is derived from previous or current customers Final Considerations Due to the recent SCOTUS ruling, it is important to review your current policies related to sending SMS/text messages. It is important to note that the April 1 SCOTUS ruling does not supersede state laws governing ATDS, telemarketing, or consumer communication. Your organization will continue to need to evaluate, interpret, and implement policies based your counsel’s recommendations. Now is an excellent time to consider the types and success of consumer acquisition, promotional outreach, and patient engagement solutions you are currently using. When doing so, please consider contacting MarkeTouch. MarkeTouch Media Solutions For 20 years, MarkeTouch has been offering pharmacies and healthcare organizations a nearly unlimited number of patient engagement campaigns. Each campaign and service is specifically designed to acquire new patients, retain your valuable customer base, grow your business, and improve clinical outcomes and operational productivity. Contact us with questions or to learn more. Until next time, take care. Matt and Charles
Marketouch
June 17, 2021
News

Lapis Lazuli – COVID-19 and the Pharmacy Butterfly Effect

The “Butterfly Effect" is a metaphor used to describe the tiny, seemingly irrelevant events that are later identified as the inception points of significant future occurrences. A butterfly flaps its wings and, weeks later, causes a tornado. Of course, a single act like the butterfly flapping its wings cannot cause a tornado. Small events can, however, serve as catalysts that build upon one another, creating waves of change.
Marketouch
June 3, 2021

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