Walgreens Quote From NACDS As “Community Pharmacy”

While many of us would consider Walgreens as one of the two models of chain pharmacy (with CVS), this quote from one of their executives from the NACDS conference in Boston right now makes it sound like they consider themselves more of a community pharmacy.

“There is no greater value in healthcare delivery than community pharmacy.  When I talk of value, I am not talking just about all that community pharmacists do everyday to help reduce drug spend.  Though that is important, pharmacy’s value goes so much deeper.  It is about community pharmacy – and the expertise of pharmacists – as a true partner in a comprehensive and collaborative approach to healthcare.  It is about improving patient health, while delivering part of the solution to driving down health costs across the spectrum by preventing more costly forms of care.”  Walgreen Co. Divisional Vice President, Government and Community Relations, and 2011 National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Pharmacy & Technology Conference Chairman Debbie B. Garza, RPh

Maybe this has been their long-term positioning, but I also wonder if a few events haven’t pushed them from being a mediator in the middle of the industry to taking a more hardline approach:

  • CVS (their competition) buys Caremark changing their retail perspective
  • Walgreens jumping into the direct-to-employer model at Caterpillar with Walmart
  • CVS Caremark and Walgreens network dispute in 2010
  • Walgreens sells their PBM to CatalystRx
  • Walgreens and Express Scripts ongoing dispute

Given the traditional angst between the independents and the PBMs, will Walgreens harden their position to be closer to the independents and what will that mean for the overall industry?

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One Response to “Walgreens Quote From NACDS As “Community Pharmacy””

  1. Did you see NCPA’s semi-endorsement of Walgreen?
    http://ncpanet.wordpress.com/2011/07/07/in-walgreens-dispute-express-scripts-seeks-knockout-blow-to-pharmacies-%E2%80%93-and-patients/

    Realpolitik. The enemy of my enemy is my friend.

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