Vaccine Business The Gateway To Drug Stores Providing Profitable Primary Healthcare
May 19, 2017 - 9:35am
In one of the stealthiest revolutions in healthcare, the role of providing vaccinations is moving away from the doctor’s office to the corner drug store and the pharmacy at your local supermarket chain, which are ultimately angling to become your primary healthcare provider.
Industry giants such as CVS Health Corp (NYSE: CVS), Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ: WBA), Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE: RAD) and Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE: WMT) — along with 22,000 privately owned pharmacies in the United States — have varying strategies for filling the gaps in accessible healthcare.
Just this week, there was a report that said Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) is looking to enter the pharmacy space.
For industry giants such as CVS, grabbing a big piece of primary care away from doctors is part of a long-term strategy. At the heart of this push is to swap out the increasingly unapproachable family doctor for the local pharmacist. The way in is through vaccines.
“We are healthcare providers on the front lines,” said Macary Marciniak, a doctor of pharmacy, assistant dean of experiential programs and clinical associate professor at the Eshelman School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina. “We're in touch with a lot of patients. There are 300,000 pharmacists administering vaccines nationwide.”
“I think there are a number of different models where the pharmacist is being engaged in primary care. I think pharmacies are becoming healthcare destinations.”
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