Walmart Opens 5 New Health Centers, Looks At Nationwide Expansion
Walmart is expanding its effort to bring low-cost care to underserved communities.
The big-box retailer is opening five new health centers at stores in Florida, offering primary and urgent care, labs, X-rays and diagnostics, dental, optical, hearing, and behavioral health and counseling, according to a report from Healthcare Dive.
The move is in line with Walmart's intention to bring health centers to all 50 states, although it is not yet clear where the company will go after Florida. MC Medical LLC, Walmart Health's medical group, has filed to do business in 37 states, although a company spokesperson told Insider last summer these filings are related to Walmart's virtual care offerings rather than in-store clinics.
The Florida health center locations, which were supposed to open in 2021 but were delayed, will also be the first to leverage Epic Systems software, which allows patients to access their records, schedule appointments and pay bills online. Walmart announced its partnership with the electronic health record, or EHR, provider last year, which will launch at the Florida stores before rolling out to clinics across Walmart’s network.
Walmart began its foray into direct healthcare delivery with the 2019 opening of its first clinic at a store in Dallas, Georgia. The company’s website now lists 20 health centers at locations across Georgia, Arkansas and Illinois. It also offers primary care clinics at several stores in Texas.
Walmart targets areas that have growing populations of elderly residents and insufficient access to care. The fee for an annual adult checkup is $90, which is competitive with other players in the market, Walmart Senior Vice President of Omnichannel Care Offerings David Carmouche told Healthcare Dive.
The retail healthcare market is booming as companies look to cash in on consumer demand for convenient care. Walgreens and VillageMD are on track to open 600 primary care clinics in more than 30 states over the next four years, and CVS planned to operate 1,500 HealthHUB locations by the end of 2021, according to Becker’s Hospital Review.