Wait, What? Walmart & Healthcare in the Same Building?

Actually, it’s true.  Walmart is getting into the healthcare market more aggressively.  Six years after opening it’s first “Care Clinic,” Walmart has just 19 in three states. 

The two health centers open in Georgia since last summer are a leap forward.  The Walmart Healthcare Center in Calhoun, Georgia, along with one about an hour south in Dallas, GA., represents the retailer’s attempt to grab a bigger slice of the nation’s $3.6 trillion in health spending by harnessing it’s greatest asset, the 150 million people coming through its 4, 756 stores each week. 

 Although, Walmart hasn’t said how many clinics it plans to build, it’s signaled that the health center expansion is one of it’s top growth initiatives.  In addition to medical, dental, and eye care. the centers also provide X-rays, hearing checks, and diagnostic lab tests for things like blood glucose and lipids.  The range of services can improve the quality of care:  If a patient comes in to see the dentist only to learn his toothache is caused by a sinus infection, he can immediately be handed over to one of the center’s physicians.

The move pits Walmart against rivals such as CVS Health Corporation, which is rolling out it’s own “HealthHubs,” as well as Amazon and Walgreens.

It’s been in the pharmacy business since 1978 when it opened it’s first pharmacy.  Now, Walmart’s U.S. Health and Wellness division, with revenues of $36 billion annually (2018 revenue), fills upwards of 400 million prescriptions annually and operates 3,000 vision centers.
Walmart won’t become a health-care destination overnight with only a handful of locations by the end of the year, the third to open this summer in Loganville, Georgia, about 45 minutes east of Atlanta.

If Walmart’s goal is to be the front door of health care for American consumers, one thing in it’s favor is the 150 million  customers coming through their front doors weekly.  Not to mention all of it’s own associates that need healthcare as well, and you may be one.  if you are do you remember the Walmart Cheer:  Give me a “W”…………….

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