Say, Ah

by Daddy Warbucks

Who is selling your doctor the newest electronic gizmo’s for your medical records? Wal-Mart. That’s who! You are kidding right? Nope.
Wal-Mart is getting big into the market for electronic health records, offering technology to the mainstream for physicians in small offices, where many of America’s doctors practice.
And guess what? You are helping Wal-Mart make a profit with your hard earned tax dollars. Wal-Mart’s move comes as the Obama administration is trying to jump-start the adoption of digital medical records with a $19 billion, that’s billion with a “B,” in incentives in the economic stimulus package.
The company and its Sam’s Club division are partners with Dell for computers and eClinicalWorks, a fast-growing private company, for software. The transition into medical records is a package deal of hardware, software, installation, maintenance and training to make the technology more accessible and affordable. And it’s typical Wal-Mart, undercutting rivals by as much as half.
Remember no one thought bar code scanners were gonna work, well, maybe Sam Walton did. And today that’s all we see. So don’t be surprised to see that goofy yellow “smiley face” button on your MD’s stethoscope someday soon.
Big Question
What percent of all the iron in the U.S. is being used to manufacture automobiles? Quick, this may be a dying statistic. Answer at the end of the column.
Coming Soon
Wood flooring giant, Lumber Liquidators, is bringing its high-quality flooring and low prices to NWA. The chain will be located at 1840 W. Sunset Ave. in Springdale and is one of 150 outlets nationwide. Check them out online at:
New Design
The New Design School, New Design Center and 3c21 Design has moved to the former Fayetteville Public Library, aka The Fulbright Building, from their Sixth Street location. Classes started March 9.
Sportsman’s Outdoor Center in the Pinnacle Parkway area of Rogers is closing its doors. A victim of the recession. The chain, like Circuit City, is closing down.
Big Deal
Tyson Foods, the planet’s largest protein producer, has inked a $1 billion credit agreement with JPMorgan Chase. Again for those numerically challenged, that’s billion with a “B.” The Springdale-based company secured the loan by offering all of its domestic subsidiaries as collateral. Hog farm anyone? The company said the $1 billion line of credit would replace another revolving credit line.
Down, Not Out
January home sales were down says the Arkansas Realtors Association. How far down? Try 27.3 percent statewide compared with January 2008. While average home prices are down 8.3 percent, bigger home price drops were noted in NWA with prices down 17.4 percent in Benton County and down 15.8 percent in Washington County. Still, the average home in Washington County sold for $163,958.
New Permit
Richard P. Alexander has requested a bed and breakfast private club permit for the Dickson Street Inn, 301 W. Dickson St. Hmm. A nice glass of wine and a little hot toddy before retiring to the B&B. Check it out, across street from Dickson Street Liquor.
Big Answer
Some 31 percent of the nation’s iron is used in the auto industry.

Categories: Features