Wednesday, June 11, 2014
It seemed like a good idea -- team with the Alzheimer's Foundation of America and provide free memory tests to anyone worried about contracting the disease. It is, but someone at Rite Aid Corp forgot to include the medical establishment, which doesn't like the idea at all. Doctors are saying the exam doesn't work well when conducted by non-professionals, and it is needlessly scaring people. So, who is right? It makes no difference because any PR boost to reputation has been covered by a cloud of controversy. The medical establishment might be self-interested and wants to hold on to the testing, but it carries the weight in the argument. This is a reminder that in any issue, there are numerous constituents who should be included in decision-making and implementation. PR practitioners know that, but someone made the decision to go ahead either without informing doctors or in the face of their opposition. It is understandable that a physician doesn't want a waiting room clogged with nervous individuals who fear they are losing their memories. Doctors have enough work already. One wonders what Rite Aid should have done before launching the program -- perhaps getting the support of a coalition of doctors first.