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Rite Aid To Close 53 Stores In 9 States

An empty Rite Aid store in Los Angeles.

Philadelphia-based pharmacy chain Rite Aid revealed it plans to close another wave of stores following its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing last year. 

The chain plans to close an additional 53 stores in nine states on top of the roughly 200 stores it has already closed, The Hill reported, citing court filings from the company. The new closures will occur in California, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia. 

In its bankruptcy filing in September, Rite Aid executives said it plans to close between 400 to 500 stores following a string of lawsuits and the $3.3B in debt it has incurred.

The lawsuits allege that the pharmacy contributed to the national opioid epidemic by filling unlawful prescriptions. The pharmacy has settled several of the lawsuits, including one in West Virginia for up to $30M, The Hill reported. 

Last year, the three largest pharmacy chains, Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid, announced the closure of over 1,500 locations across the country. CVS announced it would close 900 stores at the end of 2024, and Walgreens plans to close 450 stores by August.

As the drugstore retail landscape has transformed with e-commerce giants like Amazon and Walmart entering the space, it has created problems with brick-and-mortar locations struggling to stay alive.

The major chains are not the only ones closing down. Thousands of smaller, independent pharmacies have closed in the last decade, Fortune reported. The closures have had a ripple effect, especially in minority neighborhoods across the country that are already facing pharmacy deserts, Forbes reported