With the average family caregiver spending up to $2,500 per year for the purchase of healthcare products not covered by insurance or Medicare, the financial responsibilities facing an estimated 50 million Americans caring for aging, disabled or special needs family members and friends are taking a growing toll.
To provide some much-needed financial relief, Kmart today announced the launch of The Caregivers Marketplace™, an ongoing cash-back program for the purchase of brand-name healthcare products commonly purchased by caregivers.
"The value of 'free' family caregiving has now reached an estimated $306 billion, nearly double the amount actually spent on nursing home and homecare services," said Barbara Poling, vice president and general merchandise manager-drug store for Sears Holdings. "Caregivers Marketplace allows us to provide the growing segment of family caregivers an opportunity to save money on the products they are already buying to meet the needs of their loved ones."
The Caregivers Marketplace at Kmart is the first nationwide program to assist family caregivers in managing the everyday healthcare product expenses that add up quickly. Plus, Kmart provides caregivers the added convenience of "one-stop shopping" for these types of products.
"Caregivers are an important part of our nation's health care network and it's good to know that the private sector is doing something to try to help them," responded Congresswoman Melissa Bean (D-IL).
The typical family caregiver is a woman over the age of 45 who is handling family and work responsibilities in addition to her caregiving responsibilities," said Gail Hunt, president and CEO, National Alliance for Caregiving. "We see The Caregivers Marketplace as helping caregivers with one small piece of that potentially huge financial responsibility they may be facing."
How it Works
The Caregivers Marketplace is a free and confidential program that requires no membership. Customers may pick up a cash-back form at Kmart pharmacies beginning April 18, 2007, or download a form online at http://www.caregiversmarketplace.com/. The form is then mailed to Caregivers Marketplace with the receipts for any combination of five or more eligible products.
The average cash-back check issued by Caregivers Marketplace is expected to total approximately $30, and there is no limit to the number of times a consumer can apply for cash back.
Eligible products include: Ensure, Glucerna, Depend, Poise, Huggies, Cottonelle Fresh Folded Wipes, Citrucel, Comfort Personal Cleansing, No-Rinse, and Os-cal.
For more information, caregivers are encouraged to speak to a Kmart pharmacist. "Research suggests that pharmacists are among the most trusted and accessible professionals within healthcare, and many family caregivers turn to them for advice and guidance," said Dave Wendland, vice president of The Caregivers Marketplace, a service of Milwaukee-based Hamacher Resource Group.
In addition to The Caregivers Marketplace cash-back program for healthcare products, Kmart provides family caregivers a way to save on common prescriptions through its 90-Day Generic Program, which offers a 90-day supply of covered generic medications for $15 regardless of the prescribed daily dosage.
Kmart, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ: SHLD), is a mass merchandising company that offers customers quality products through a portfolio of exclusive brands that include Jaclyn Smith, Joe Boxer, Martha Stewart Everyday and Route 66. For more information visit the company's Web site at http://www.kmart.com/ or the Sears Holdings Corporation Web site at http://www.searsholdings.com/.
First Call Analyst:
CONTACT: Kirsten Whipple of Kmart, +1-847-286-3037, or Amy Kazsa,
+1-414-431-5308, for Kmart