CVS to Close 900 Stores Over 3 Years, Pivot to Primary Care

NEW YORK -
Products are seen in a CVS pharmacy store in Manhattan, New York, U.S., November 15, 2021. (REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

CVS, the largest American pharmacy chain, announced it would close 900 stores, or 10% of its locations, over the next three years, while expanding health services in its remaining outlets.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the company is focusing on in-person healthcare, with primary-care offices, diagnostic testing, and mental-health services available in the stores.

CVS hired about 20,000 pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and nurses amidst national staffing shortages amidst a surge of customers and demands for coronavirus testing, vaccines, and filling prescriptions.

CVS, with 10,104 locations as of of 2020, played a key role in the government’s coronavirus vaccine rollout by offering the shots in most stores. Between CVS, its main rival Walgreens, and other smaller chains, retail pharmacies distributed a third of all the vaccines.