Walmart will close its health centers

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Walmart is closing its health centers and virtual care service after struggling to find success with the offerings, the U.S. retailer said Tuesday.
A spokeswoman said reimbursement proved challenging “from all types of insurance.” The planned closure of the Walmart Health centers comes after the company announced in March 2023 that it planned to add more than two dozen health centers to some of its stores this year.
At the time, the company said that it was looking to open 28 centers in 2024, mostly in Dallas and Houston.
Walmart is among several retailers that sought to build a presence with medical clinics and make health care more accessible.
In late March, the company announced the closure of 140 of its VillageMD primary care clinics and plans to shutter 20 more to boost profitability.
Although the United States has a shortage of primary care doctors, building a network of primary care clinics can be challenging even for established companies, according to health care researchers and analysts.
Walmart does not yet have specific dates for when its health centers will close, but said that it will share that information when it’s available.
The company said that employees that worked at its health centers are eligible to transfer to any other Walmart or Sam’s Club location.


Following struggles to find success with its offerings, Walmart is closing its health centers and virtual care service. s. shop stated on Tuesday.

The Bentonville, Arkansas-based company stated that it came to the conclusion that “there is not a sustainable business model for us to continue” after overseeing the clinics it opened in 2019 and growing its telehealth program. “.

Targeting consumers looking to cut costs on medical care, Walmart operated 51 health centers across five states.

“Like others, we find the care business unsustainable at this time due to the difficult reimbursement environment and rising operating costs that lead to a lack of profitability,” the company said in a statement.

Reimbursement proved difficult “from all types of insurance,” a spokesperson said. “.

In March 2023, Walmart announced that it would be adding over twenty health centers to select stores this year. This announcement coincides with the planned closure of Walmart Health Centers. When this was announced, the company stated that it planned to open 28 locations in 2024, primarily in Houston and Dallas. It had plans to grow and enter the cities of Phoenix and Kansas City, Missouri.

Walmart is one of many retailers that aimed to establish a relationship with healthcare facilities and increase accessibility to healthcare. However, some people have had difficulty.

A few years ago, Walgreens invested over $5 billion to acquire a majority stake in VillageMD, with the intention of expanding its network of pharmacies to hundreds of locations. The company announced in late March that it was closing 140 VillageMD primary care clinics and that it intended to close 20 more in order to increase profitability. Following an adjustment to the asset’s value in its most recent quarter, Walgreens recorded an after-tax impairment charge of $5.8 billion for VillageMD.

Health care researchers and analysts assert that even established companies may face difficulties in developing a primary care clinic network, despite the shortfall of primary care physicians in the United States.

Many individuals who already have a doctor might be reluctant to switch, and some might object to receiving medical care in a retail or store environment. Additionally, treating and improving the health of new patients who have not been seeing a doctor may require clinics to spend a significant amount of money.

Walmart claims to share information as soon as it becomes available, but it does not yet have precise dates for the closure of its health centers. According to the company, workers at its health centers are free to transfer to any other Walmart or Sam’s Club location.

In the US, Walmart still operates over 3,000 vision centers and about 4,600 pharmacies. s.


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