Humana and Walgreens Boots Alliance say they are are expanding a joint venture developing senior health clinics to more locations.
The two began a test in the Kansas City market where a pilot of two sites inside drugstores has been underway for about a year. On Tuesday, Walgreens and Humana said they will open “three additional Partners in Primary Care centers inside Walgreens stores – two in the Kansas City area and another in Anderson, South Carolina.”
The effort is designed in part to keep people out of the more expensive hospital setting and make sure Medicare patients have their care more closely monitored by Walgreens pharmacists and physicians in Humana’s health plan networks. The two companies think they can do a better job of reaching patients who visit Walgreens retail locations and making sure they get better care upfront before they get sick.
“We are finding that seniors appreciate not just the high quality of clinical care, but also the social interactions, the personal attention, the convenience and the enhanced coordination between their pharmacist, physician and the health guides we have on site,” Jim OConor, senior vice president of Walgreens Neighborhood Health Destinations said in a statement accompanying the announcement. “Together, we are simplifying social and clinical care in the neighborhood as we transform our stores into convenient neighborhood health destinations.”
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The Humana senior clinic partnership is part of Walgreens response to rival drugstore chain CVS Health’s acquisition of Aetna, the nation’s third-largest health insurance company. In June, CVS said it will expand its new health hub concept to 1,500 stores across the U.S. within three years.
The senior clinics Walgreens is developing with Humana are designed to complement the prescriptions and pharmacy services offered at Walgreens with Humana’s “Partners in Primary Care” centers that opened two years ago in Kansas City.
Inside the Walgreens, Humana employees assist seniors in the insurer’s Medicare plans and other “customers, with information and assistance in accessing a range of health-related services,” the companies said when they launched the partnership last year. “From conducting diabetes education to identifying local community support groups and finding a new senior fitness class, a holistic approach to customers’ health will be available at no cost, and close to home.”
“The decision to expand our test-and-learn collaboration in both the Kansas City area and a new market – Anderson, South Carolina –reflects our ongoing commitment to provide integrated care that meets the unique health care needs of seniors in convenient locations in their neighborhoods,” Renee Buckingham, president of Humana’s Care Delivery Organization said. “Patients of Partners in Primary Care located inside Walgreens have access to a comprehensive care team, led by board-certified primary care physicians that extends far beyond a typical nurse practitioner model often housed in retail locations.”
Date: August 05, 2019