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IPA HEADLINES

AROUND THE STATE; News made by Illinois newspapers

Northwestern student newspaper's apology sparks journalism debate

CHICAGO – Student editors at the newspaper covering Northwestern University faced two waves of criticism over their coverage of protests in response to an event featuring former Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

First, student activists criticized them for publishing photos of protesters on the suburban Chicago campus. Within days, editors at The Daily Northwestern apologized, but their editorial prompted a second round of criticism from journalists around the country who said they shouldn't feel any guilt about using basic reporting strategies.

In the editorial, posted online Nov. 10 and printed Nov. 11, editors said they shouldn't have tweeted photos of student protesters being blocked by campus police as they tried to get inside the Sessions event the previous week. The photos were later deleted.

Editors said they didn't want students to be punished by the school or harassed online. The eight editors who signed the editorial also acknowledged removing a protester's name from a story about the event at the person's request, and said they were sorry for using a student directory to text people who protested at the event and ask them for interviews.

"While our goal is to document history and spread information, nothing is more important than ensuring that our fellow students feel safe, and in situations like this, that they are benefiting from our coverage rather than being actively harmed by it," the statement read. "We failed to do that last week, and we could not be more sorry."

Professional journalists criticized the students' take as wrongheaded, inexperienced and an ominous sign for the profession's future. Others suggested the students were right to consider the effects of interviewing and photographing protesters but communicated that goal poorly.

 

School board mulls charging fees for FOIA requests

PAXTON – A Paxton-Buckley-Loda school board member has suggested the school district charge fees for processing requests for public records, noting that Freedom of Information Act requests have become a burden on the district's resources.

"I wouldn't want to guess how much paper and how much staff time we've used in the last six­plus months to comply with literally thousands of pages of FOIA requests," board member Steve Pacey said during a Nov. 13 meeting. "I mean, I believe in FOIA, but the statute does provide that we can make a reasonable charge to comply with burdensome requests."

Pacey suggested the board "at some point" discuss whether to begin charging fees specifically for what he termed "voluminous requests" that require staff members' time and paper costs in order to comply with.

His suggestion followed the board's review of a spreadsheet provided by Superintendent Cliff McClure showing FOIA requests recently submitted to the district.

"It's quite voluminous. I read it," board President Dawn Bachtold told Pacey. "And you're right; there is cost. There's cost as it relates to our administrators and our staff time, and there's also attorney costs related to it, so I think it's a valid point that you raise."

Among the recent FOIA requests were eight from the Ford County Record. The newspaper has been seeking information about the demolition of the 94-year-old PBL Eastlawn School building, and the district has complied with all requests, providing hundreds of pages of documents in electronic format.

Under state FOIA, a public body can charge fees for documents in paper or electronic format which are used for "a commercial purpose" or constitute "a voluminous request."

Fees for paper documents requested by news media which are not considered requests for "commercial purposes" or "voluminous requests" may also be imposed, but the media may ask for a waiver or reduction of those fees. No fees may be charged for records requested by news media if they are provided in electronic format.

 

Lake Forest Leader appeals school district’s denial of records request

LAKE FOREST – The Lake Forest Leader is appealing the denial of an Illinois Freedom of Information request made to Lake Forest School District 67 that sought more information about the administrative leave and ultimate resignation of Deer Path Middle School Principal Tom Cardamone.

Cardamone was placed on administrative leave at the end of September, and announced his resignation in October, effective Dec. 31. It is unclear why Cardamone was placed on absence, as school officials have repeatedly declined to comment on the matter, calling it a personnel issue. In an attempt to seek more information, The Leader filed five records requests in October. Three were denied by the district, while the district also contended to have no records of any "complaints" or "grievances" against Cardamone made in the past two years.

One request from The Leader, however, produced a copy of an email conversation between Cardamone and district Human Resources Director Allison Stampien, in which a meeting to discuss a "teacher concern" had been scheduled between the two, where a campus security guard was also present. When The Leader requested more information about that meeting, the district denied the request, calling any records it had "predecisional communication in which recommendations and opinions are expressed, or policies or actions are formulated, and the record has not been publicly disclosed by the head of the public body. Thus, the record is exempt from disclosure."

The Leader is appealing that ruling to the Office of Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul, contending that District 67 is misinterpreting the exemption and any fact-based materials are a matter of public record. The district has also twice denied The Leader's request for internal communication regarding Cardamone in the week leading up to the meeting in question. The district says the requests have been too broad, returning records too voluminous and burdensome to staff.

The Leader has amended its request to narrow its scope and is awaiting response from the district.

 

U of I free speech suit settled

URBANA – The University of Illinois has settled out of court with a student who sued it on the grounds that a no­-contact order against him stifled his First Amendment freedoms.

Under the terms of the settlement, a copy of which was obtained by The News-­Gazette in Champaign through an open records request, junior Blair Nelson would agree to follow a no-contact order, but one that wouldn't restrict him from recording a graduate student he was accused of following, as long as it's inadvertent or at a public event.

However, he would be restricted from intentional conduct "that a reasonable person under the circumstances would conclude is intended to intimidate or harass (Tariq) Khan."

The civil suit filed in federal court by Nelson and Andrew Minik and Joel Valdez, fellow students at the time, stemmed from a 2017 incident in which Khan allegedly grabbed Valdez's phone during a protest of President Donald Trump in front of the Alma Mater and threw it to the ground while Nelson was filming. About a month later, on the day Khan appeared in court on a misdemeanor charge of criminal damage to property, the three plaintiffs were issued no-contact directives by Assistant Dean of Students Rony Die.

"Nelson agrees this ... constitutes a lawful, enforceable agreement and does not violate his constitutional rights or any other rights," the settlement states.

An attorney for Nelson could not be reached for comment. The settlement also includes a declaration from Nelson that insists he was acting as a journalist.

"At no point, either before this litigation began, nor any time after, have I stalked or harassed Mr. Khan," the settlement goes on to state. "Since this litigation began, I have purposefully avoided Mr. Khan and have not continued my reporting on him."

Khan accused Nelson of violating the no-contact order by filming and following him, including at State Farm Center, according to the settlement. The plaintiffs argued the no-contact order restricted their ability to report, but the UI said the order was not content-based and did not restrict the plaintiffs from publishing. In a statement after the lawsuit was filed in April 2018, UI spokeswoman Robin Kaler declined to comment on pending litigation, but said, "The university is committed to protecting the rights of expression and speech of all members of our community."

In mid-December, attorneys for the UI filed a stipulation to dismiss the lawsuit based on a settlement being reached.

"The university has stated clearly that it denies the allegations in the lawsuit, but ending the litigation now allows the parties to move forward and prevents additional costs for either side," Kaler said Friday.

The students were a part of the campus conservative group Turning Point USA @UIUC and write for the website Campus Reform.

Khan is countersuing the plaintiffs, seeking more than $50,000 in damages for "intentional infliction of emotional distress" and hate crimes. He alleges that after the Trump protest, his Facebook page and university email address were posted online "at sites known to be supported by racists and hate ­group supporters." This led to more than a dozen threatening emails or messages, Khan alleges, including many that mock his race and beliefs.

While the settlement would end the litigation between Nelson and the UI once approved by a judge, Khan's countersuit continues.

 

New Trier News celebrates 100-year history

NEW TRIER – More than 80 current and former New Trier News reporters, editors and photographers spent the morning of Dec. 21 celebrating the student newspaper's 100-year history at an alumni celebration.

Features Editor Simren Dadwani, a junior from Northfield, shared the excitement of preparing for the big day.

"We've been busy pulling some of the top stories from each decade,” Dadwani said. “It's been really interesting to see what topics made the paper throughout the years."

Dadwani and other current staffers further explained how today's hot topics such as vaping and school safety aren't that different from the concerns of yesteryear.

"While vaping is certainly a popular topic today in our newspaper, smoking was just as hot of a topic in the past,” Dadwani said.

“School safety is a repetitive topic that has made the paper throughout the decades. In the 1970s, for example, there were concerns about bomb threats," Chief Editor Katy Pickens of Wilmette said. "One difference is that today, stories surrounding mental health are common, where you don't see too much of this in the past. I think people are just starting to become more comfortable talking about anxiety, depression and other stressors that teens face."

Wilmette's Ron Pomerantz, Class of 1972, stopped by for a visit, showing off his old-school Nikon camera used during his time as a staff photographer. He entertained students with stories of how wax was used during the layout process – just slightly different from today's digital age.

Danny Teinowitz, Class of 1981, told students about his experience as one of the sports writers and how Dr. Robert Boyle taught him many valuable skills.

"Working on the paper taught me how to distinguish fact from heresy, how to ask the right questions and how to get to the bottom of a story," Teinowitz said. "Mr. Boyle told us, 'The best way to educate oneself is to learn how to ask intelligent questions.' This advice has stuck with me until this day and benefitted me as a lawyer."

 

Newseum closes its doors, beaten by free museums

WASHINGTON – In 2008, the Newseum – a private museum dedicated to exploring modern history as told through the eyes of journalists – opened on prime Washington real estate.

Sitting almost equidistant between the White House and the Capitol on Pennsylvania Avenue, the glass-walled building became instantly recognizable for its multi­story exterior rendition of the First Amendment.

Eleven years later, that experiment came to an end. After years of financial difficulties, the Newseum closed Dec. 31.

"We're proud of how we did our storytelling," said Sonya Gavankar, the outgoing director of public relations. "We changed the model of how museums did their work."

The building was sold for $372.5 million to Johns Hopkins University, which intends to consolidate its scattered Washington-based graduate studies programs under one roof.

Gavankar attributed the failure to a "mosaic of factors," but one of them was certainly unfortunate timing. The opening coincided with the 2008 economic recession, which hit newspapers particularly hard and caused mass layoffs and closings across the industry. She also acknowledged that the Newseum's status as a for-pay private institution was a harder sell in a city full of free museums.

A Newseum ticket cost $25 for adults, and the building is right across the street from the National Gallery of Art and within blocks of multiple Smithsonian museums.

"Competing with free institutions in Washington was difficult," Gavankar said.

Another problem, organizers said, is that the Newseum struggled to attract local residents, instead depending on a steady diet of tourists and local school groups.

 

Du Quoin Weekly, Pinckneyville Press to combine

PINCKNEYVILLE – The Du Quoin Weekly and Pinckneyville Press will streamline their operations as a countywide publication.

The move was spurred by mounting costs, including increased print and mailing costs along with the incremental increase to minimum wage, according to Pinckneyville Press Editor Jeff Egbert. He said more and more readers have been requesting news from both sides of Beaucoup Creek.

All the readers who are subscribers to both publications will have their subscriptions extended to reflect the amount of their remaining paid subscriptions to both newspapers. Additionally, the combined circulation of the new Weekly-Press will now have four times the reach of the two papers individually, Egbert said.

 

Staunton Star-Times will be under new ownership

STAUNTON – Walter Haase, longtime publisher of the Staunton Star­Times, retired Jan. 1.

Haase was publisher for 57 years and an employee of the Star-Times for 60 years.

Haase and his father, Walter Haase, Sr., had been at the helm of the Star-Times for 87 years. 

The Star­Times will continue publication under the guidance of new owners, John and Susan Galer of Hillsboro.

 

Alton Telegraph adds TV publication

ALTON – The Telegraph is partnering with NTVB Media Inc., a leading publisher of TV entertainment and listings magazines, to offer TV Weekly.

The publication is the nation's leading magazine for television listings and will provide Telegraph subscribers comprehensive information about what's on television. A free trial issue was included in the first two Sunday editions of the Telegraph in January.

The paper, in turn, stopped printing the weekly "What's On" section.

TV Weekly is a subscription magazine offered to The Telegraph's readers and subscribers at a highly discounted rate off of the cover price. The publication features 48 pages of expanded content, including channel guides, puzzles (including crosswords and Sudoku), complete live sports listings, horoscopes, feature stories, a streaming guide and A-to-­Z movie listings.

 

Prophetstown Echo moves to Morrison office

MORRISON – The Prophetstown Echo, a weekly newspaper bought by Shaw Media last spring, moved into the company’s Morrison office at the turn of the year.

Shaw Media also acquired four daily newspapers in the county in the spring.

The weekly Whiteside County newspaper will continue to be published on the same schedule that has been in effect for decades. 

 

Journal-Republican purchased

MONTICELLO – The new owners of News-Gazette Media – Champaign Multimedia Group – became the new owners of The Piatt County Journal-Republican in November.

CMG officials say the new ownership means a renewed commitment to the area's local, weekly newspapers. The company is now the owner of 46 newspapers, most of them weeklies.

CMG is a subsidiary of the Illinois-based Community Media Group, a family-owned, privately held multimedia company which owns and operates daily and weekly newspapers, direct mail shoppers, and other print distribution products in six states.

 

Paddock's Town Square becomes nation's biggest chamber guide publisher 

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS – Paddock Publications-owned Town Square Publications has acquired Metro-Media Inc. of Fairway, Kansas, making Town Square the nation's largest publisher of Chamber of Commerce guides.

The deal closed the first week of January. Paddock also owns the Daily Herald. 

The acquisition broadens Town Square's Chamber relationships across the country, adding in particular to partnerships in states such as California and Texas. Unlike with past acquisitions by Town Square, MetroMedia will remain a stand­alone division of TownSquare.

The staff of MetroMedia will be led by David Small, the former co-owner and a veteran of the Chamber publishing industry. He will remain based in Kansas. 

 

Pantagraph, Herald & Review websites updated

BLOOMINGTON – The award-winning websites for The Pantagraph in Bloomington and Herald & Review in Decatur now have a redesigned, cleaner structure, featuring bigger headlines, bolder photos and a streamlined format that's easier to navigate with a click or swipe.

There is more white space and a fresh look and feel throughout. On stories, related content is more prominent, as are slideshows, video and multimedia. Content is easier to share and distribute on social media. The latest sports, entertainment, lifestyle and opinion content also is featured prominently.

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Press Releases

 

Illinois Conference of Churches response to the Virus and the

Re-opening of the State
 

CONTACT: Pastor Walter Carlton
carlson.walter@gmail.com
May 19, 2020
For Immediate Release



The Leadership Team of the Illinois Conference of Churches (ICC) believes sheltering-in-place guidelines save lives during the Covid-19 pandemic. We support careful, evidence-based steps to re-open the economy.

We believe that the health and safety of our wider community rises above individual autonomy in this unprecedented global emergency.

Limiting public excursions for anything but essential purposes and exercise and the wearing of masks in public while practicing social distancing are practical ways of showing respect for the communities where we live and serve.

But we don’t like it.

Those we love and serve are hurting

We grieve the myriad losses our communities are experiencing, not the least of which is the loss of life. Even in the midst of this crisis, more have died in this country from the coronavirus than in the Vietnam War. Business owners, closed now for weeks, wonder how long and if they can hold on. Teachers and parents are struggling with teaching from home. Our front-line workers have held the line steadily with grace and courage. While some families are enjoying down time and togetherness, economic and social stresses are tearing others apart. Our state must rely on science-based directives so that we will properly protect the people who live here.

While the CARES Act, unemployment benefits, and other programs are helping some, many people fall through the cracks. Small businesses, the homeless, the seriously disabled are struggling. There is evidence that the fault lines of race and economic disparity that have always divided our communities may widen. The pandemic has caused many problems for Black and Brown people because of employment as essential workers. Many are not eligible for the stimulus money or unemployment. Health care is not an option for part-time workers while pre-existing medical conditions plague Hispanics and African-Americans.

While we do not know what science will indicate about coming back together for worship, movies, concerts, and even haircuts, we are hopeful that human kindness, not to mention the grace of God, will flourish just as wildly as springtime is blooming across our state

We are in prayer for our beloved state and her people, particularly mindful of those whose lives and livelihoods are most endangered.

 

The Leadership Team of the Illinois Conference of Churches
We represent approximately seven million Illinois Christians
in 13 denominations.

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Retired teachers to mentor students virtually
 

CONTACT: Nathan Mihelich, IRTA
(217) 481-6915
nathan@irtaonline.org
April 6, 2020
For Immediate Release


(April 6, 2020 - Springfield, Ill.) Members of the Illinois Retired Teachers Association, a statewide association of retired educators, their families and supporters, are volunteering during this COVID-19 pandemic to assist students tackling the unprecedented challenge of finishing the school year at home.

“We want to help students learn,” said John Flaherty, a former high school and special education teacher and current president of the Illinois Retired Teachers Association. “Our members are ready to help students build their learning skills and tutor in highly advanced subject areas like chemistry and mathematics. For elementary students, self-paced and self-directed learning is a foreign concept. A teacher-mentor will help students take their own initiative and focus their learning at their own pace.”

Parents desiring to match their student with a retired teacher may sign up on the Association’s website, www.irtaonline.org. Mentors are on a first come, first serve basis. Mentors will meet with students in virtual environments. Mentorships will last from now until the end of the school year or June 1st. Mentorships are at the sole discretion of the teacher-mentors.

“A retired Illinois public school teacher’s depth of knowledge is so great, it may be just what parents need to energize their children into at-home students,” Association Executive Director Jim Bachman said. “Retiree-mentors can specifically target aspects of learning that need the most attention, whether it’s mathematics, science, history, writing or reading.”

“Younger students may simply need help reading a story; other students will need advanced tutoring. If we retirees can find a way to help, we will,” Flaherty concluded.

IRTA encourages former teachers, spouses and supporters of teachers to join the Association. Learn more, join or renew your IRTA membership today at https://www.irtaonline.org.
 

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Watch your well-being during coronavirus distancing

 

By Graham A. Colditz

Siteman Cancer Center

For Immediate Release

 

Daily life has changed to an amazing degree in the last few weeks. As individuals and communities work to contain the spread of COVID-19, one major adjustment for most of us personally is that we now spend much more time at home. This form of physical distancing, or sheltering in place, limits contact between people, which can help curb the infection’s spread.

As necessary as this distancing is, it is a change that can also be stressful, tedious and isolating, among many other things. So, as we all work to get used to our new and, ultimately, temporary reality, here are eight ways to look after your health, your well-being and yourself during these unique times.

Be kind to yourself. The great thing about physical distancing is that by doing nothing — just staying inside — we’re doing something really important. Despite what you may see on social media, you don’t need to be writing a novel, conducting your children in a symphony or even reorganizing your sock drawer — unless you really want to. Be kind to yourself, and just take time to figure out what works best for you and your family.

Take a break from the news. Even in normal times, the sheer volume of news can feel overwhelming. These days, it’s even worse. So, be sure to carve out chunks of the day when you take a rest and shut off the news and pandemic-related social media feeds. Pick up a book. Stream a TV show. Play a board game. The news will still be there when you get back to it.

Keep up healthy food choices. When our regular routines are upended, our food choices can be, too — and often not for the better. A healthy diet can be a good way to maintain some normalcy, help keep the immune system working well and keep calories in check during these times when we’re less active and may feel urges to eat because of stress or boredom. When stocking up at the grocery store, focus on nourishing and filling foods, such as whole-grain breads and cereals, brown rice, fruits and vegetables (frozen, canned or fresh) and beans. And if you buy sweets and less-healthy foods, store them out of sight so they’re less tempting. With the economy hard hit, food insecurity can also be an issue for many. For food assistance, or to donate, contact food banks in your area, or visit feedingamerica.org.

Keep moving. Although gyms are closed and exercise classes canceled, it’s still important to stay physically active. It can take a little extra creativity and more planning than before, but the payoff in energy, mood and overall well-being make it well worth it. YouTube is a great source for free yoga, dance and cardio videos. Exercise apps are another option. And, for most people, getting outside for a walk or bike ride is still allowed (while keeping a safe distance from others). Don’t worry about hitting specific goals, just try to fit something in on most days. You’ll be happy you did.

Stand more. This can sound a bit odd. But, on top of staying active, try to make an effort to stand more than you normally would when you’re at home. In our normal days before COVID-19, it’d be rare to sit for most of the day. Going to class, walking to meetings, doing errands or spending time with the kids, we were on our feet a good amount. Now, while most of us are spending much more time at home, we’re probably also spending much more time sitting. Long term, sitting too much is bad for health, and short term, it can sap some of our energy and just make the long days at home feel even longer. So, try to work some standing breaks into your schedule. Set a timer that chimes every half hour to remind you to get up for a short leg stretch. Or try standing when watching TV shows, working on your computer or playing with your pet.

Stay connected — virtually. While we may no longer be able to meet up with friends and colleagues in the real world, we can still stay connected through technology. Host a trivia game over group video chat, share recipes via text message or email, or just pick up the phone and have a long talk with your best friend. The options are wide open for making connections.

Check in with your health-care provider if you have an existing medical condition such as heart disease, diabetes or cancer. See if there are any changes you should make during this time, such as rescheduling appointments, extending prescriptions or connecting remotely by telehealth rather than in person. Because COVID-19 can be more serious in some people with pre-existing diseases, it’s also especially important to follow recommendations for keeping safe, such as staying at home, avoiding groups and close contact with others, keeping surfaces clean and washing hands frequently.

Look after your mental wellness. This can be a time of stress, anxiety and loneliness for many people. So, as you’re looking after your physical health, it’s extremely important to also look after your mental and emotional health. Try to keep up with those things that can help with mood: physical activity, mindfulness and meditation, and connecting with friends using technology. Many people also need professional help. So, don’t be shy about calling a health-care provider or visiting the National Alliance on Mental Illness (nami.org) for resources. If you ever feel you’re in crisis, call 911 and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) immediately.

We’ll get through this together, even as we’re safely distancing ourselves for now.

It’s our health. Let’s take control.

# # #

Dr. Graham A. Colditz, associate director of prevention and control at Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, is an internationally recognized leader in cancer prevention. As an epidemiologist and public health expert, he has a long-standing interest in the preventable causes of chronic disease. Colditz has a medical degree from The University of Queensland and a master’s and doctoral degrees in public health from Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

 

Greystone Health Centers offering employment opportunities to displaced workers and retirees Edit

For Immediate Release – March 17, 2020

The spread of COVID-19 has greatly impacted all our lives, especially our vulnerable, elderly population and those in senior living communities across the United States. As we continue to take guidance from The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services, The Center for Disease Control, The World Health Organization as well as the local Departments of Health to ensure the safety and well-being of our residents and employees,  our teams at all of our Greystone Health Centers continues to be dedicated to our residents and staff by remaining not only vigilant but compassionate.

It takes a village to provide loving care to our residents daily and now more than ever with the ever-changing situation with COVID-19 affecting so many people, we are looking for new employees to be a part of our village. As a skilled nursing facility, we are open 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, caring for residents and keeping them safe.

We understand many people have been affected in various ways by the pandemic including businesses temporarily closing or shutting down altogether. We also know there are many people out there seeking to find ways where they can make a difference and help those in need. We encourage those that have been displaced or want to make a difference in the lives of our nation’s seniors to come join us.

We have a wide range of roles available such as certified nursing assistants, nurses, concierge, activities, dining staff, cooks and more to support our residents. We have full-time, part-time and PRN opportunities. A list of all of our openings is online at www.greystonehealthcareers.com or text CARE to 97211 to learn more about our facilities in Florida, Illinois & Missouri.

Greystone Health has great benefits and competitive wages but most of all we can offer the opportunity to WORK WHERE PEOPLE MATTER.

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Press Release
Contact: Monique Whitney, Monique@TruthRx.org, m. (505) 480-4150
Immediate Release: March 16, 2020

 

Illinois Independent Pharmacies Launch
Their Own Medicare-D Plan This Fall

Newly Licensed Indy Health Insurance Company Aims to Restore Trust with Independent Pharmacy-Owned
Medicare Part D Plan
 

SPRINGFIELD, IL (March 16, 2020) – Who better to design a patient-centered, pharmacy-friendly pharmacy benefit plan than a pharmacist?
 
That’s the premise behind a new Medicare-D plan making its debut this fall thanks to a group of independent pharmacies and pharmacy organizations who got sick of being pushed around by the largest pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), deciding instead to take matters into their own hands. 
 
The result is Indy Health Insurance Company, newly licensed and on track to roll out its first plan offering this October when Medicare open enrollment begins.
 
"Ours is a 100% independent pharmacy and independent pharmacy organization-owned plan built on a network of 22,000 pharmacies across the country," said Indy Health Chair Laura Atkinson. "We envision a more transparent, affordable, cost effective alternative for independent pharmacies and their patients."
 
Indy Health's Medicare-D plan will offer seniors an affordable prescription plan that pairs with their Medicare medical plan. Indy Health allows enrollees to receive their medications from their local community pharmacies in a preferred network that does not force the use of mail order or large retail chain pharmacies. “Participants may use their neighborhood pharmacy, and that pharmacy can provide mail service if needed, which is often restricted under other plans,” said Ms. Atkinson.
 
“It was important to us to protect patient choice,” said Todd Evers, Collinsville, Illinois-based pharmacist and board member, and managing partner for Indy Health.  “Community pharmacies are uniquely positioned to care for patients, meeting the same demands as the big-box retail pharmacies but with quality and attention to detail you’d expect from a community pharmacy.”
 
Under Indy Health, pharmacies will pay no direct and indirect remuneration (DIR) fees -- a type of “claw back” PBMs collect to offset Medicare plan member costs. In 2018 small pharmacies paid average DIR fees of $129,613 per store– an 87% increase from 2017 according to 2019 industry survey. DIR fees are a primary factor in the epidemic of community pharmacy closures. “The absence of DIR fees is a big win for independent pharmacies, who could move from surviving the current U.S. drug pricing crisis to thriving,” said Ms. Atkinson.
 
With approved licensure in Arkansas, Indy Health will expand to Georgia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Illinois, and has begun the application process with the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare (CMS). Upon CMS approval, Indy Health will begin enrolling patients in October 2020.

The Indy Health Medicare-D plan is owned by investors in 34 states, including Illinois.
 
About Indy Health:
 
The Indy Health team has over 616 combined years of experience in Medicare-D plans, Health Insurance, Med D Actuarial Health Insurance Law, and Pharmacy. The Indy Health team’s mission is to create a transparent Medicare-D plan that provides fair reimbursements for independent pharmacies as well as transparent pricing and affordable medications for consumers.
 
Through Indy Health Insurance Company, Medicare-D plan independent pharmacies will be able to create their own formulary, medication therapy management services and to negotiate their own rebates through an independently owned sustainable entity that provides them with equitable representation within the prescription drug system.  To learn more about Indy Health, including information about investment opportunities, please visit IndyHealthInc.com.
 

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Press Release
Contact: Kim Schilling, Melting Pot Productions, 712-326-9964
Immediate Release: February 28, 2020

Antique Spectacular Vintage Market

March 6-8 inRock Island, IL

(Rock Island, IL) The annual Spring Antique Spectacular Vintage Market will be March 6th-8th at the QCCA Expo Center in Rock Island, Illinois. This anticipated event, will feature 70 exhibitors with antiques & vintage items galore at Antique Spectacular. The show, now in its 26th year, is located at the QCCA Expo Center, 2621 4th Avenue in Rock Island, Illinois! It is overflowing with a wonderful variety of fine antiques and vintage collectibles for sale. Featured will be select antique dealers with unique merchandise from around the world. Hunters of vintage will have an opportunity, all weekend, to shop the wide range of quality antiques.


With the Antique Spectacular, there is always something to interest every collector, whether they have a new interest in vintage & repurposed for decorating their home or have been collecting antiques for years. This includes great furniture, art pottery, country, stoneware, books, prints, primitives, jewelry, silver, antique glassware, American Indian items, china, postcards, coins, quilts, dolls, toys, advertising, marbles, rugs, vintage textiles and period pieces. The list of amazing vintage items is endless and all under one roof for the convenience to shop all weekend, for a timeless vintage treasure, that is new to you.


March 6th-8th, the Antique Spectacular show hours are Friday, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Parking is FREE and Patrons can check out and register on the website: www.antiquespectacular.com to print a $1 off coupon.
Antique Spectacular Vintage Market Show Hours:
Friday, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
$8 Weekend Pass
More information about the Antique Spectacular is available at www.antiquespectacular.com or by calling Kimberly Schilling at 712-324-9964. The Antique Spectacular is presented by Melting Pot Productions, Inc.

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