CVS Health is leaning heavily into its strategy of becoming a data-enabled provider of health services since its blockbuster acquisition of Aetna last year through both digital and in-person services.
The company is expanding its direct-to-consumer telehealth offerings of its MinuteClinic services to 8 additional states. The virtual visits, enabled by a partnership with Teladoc, allows patients to connect with clinicians through their mobile device or computer for low-grade medical issues like minor illnesses and skin conditions.
The service was initially launched in 2018 and is now being offered in 26 states and Washington, D.C. The telehealth offerings – which cost $59 and can be accessed 24 hours a day – are available to patients two years and older who are matched with a board-certified health care provider.
From the video visit, the provider can submit prescriptions to a preferred pharmacy and help schedule follow-up in-person care at a MinuteClinic location or with the patient’s primary care provider. CVS Health said that more than half of MinuteClinic Video Visits have occurred outside of traditional clinic hours, expanding access to healthcare services.
“The expansion of this MinuteClinic service enables us to provide even more people with access to an innovative, on-demand health care option and demonstrates our commitment to delivering high-quality care when and where our patients need it, at prices they can afford,” MinuteClinic President Sharon Vitti said in a statement.
Alongside the growth of the company’s digital care offerings, the company has also sharpened the plans for the expansion of its HealthHUB concept stores.
Earlier this year, the retail pharmacy giant announced plans to open up 1,500 HealthHUB locations by 2021, which offer additional health services like phlebotomy and exam rooms for health screenings.
The stores also offer multipurpose wellness spaces which can be used for yoga classes, nutritional seminars, benefits education and health classes and stock a wider array of health products and supplies.
After an initial successful pilot in Houston, CVS said it will open around 50 additional locations in Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, southern New Jersey and Tampa later this year.
Now the store concept is also landing in Boston, Dallas/Fort Worth, Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and other major metropolitan markets in Florida in the first half of 2020. The company is also planning a limited expansion in Hartford, New York City and Washington D.C. during the same time period.
“Our customers love the new format. And by creating a unique health care experience that meets consumers where they are and helps them achieve their best health at a lower cost, we’ve set the stage for our company to compete and win in an industry that is rapidly transforming,” CVS Pharmacy President Kevin Hourican said in a statement.
Picture: CVS Health