CVS Health is rolling out prescription delivery to nearly all 9,800 CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide.
Customers can now request prescription delivery online, via the CVS Pharmacy app or over the phone. Deliveries are made “as quickly as the next day,” according to a company statement. Shoppers also can add over-the-counter products to their delivery orders.
The delivery service charge is $4.99, well below the $19.95 prescription delivery price charged by Walgreens.
CVS also is adding same-day prescription delivery in select cities, expanding the service from New York City to Boston, Miami, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. In these markets, same-day delivery costs $8.99.
CVS will ship the products through the U.S. Postal Service, which can leave deliveries at customers’ homes even if they’re not there.
The move comes as CVS navigates through a shifting landscape where more pharmacies are expanding health care capabilities. CVS acquired Aetna for $69 billion, with the pharmacy citing that broader use of data and analytics would help patients avoid unnecessary hospital readmissions, thus lowering health care costs.
CVS also may be prepping for potential disruption caused by Amazon. Amazon already has partnered with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase to create an independent health care company for employees, and has flirted with the idea of selling prescription drugssince gaining approval to become a wholesale pharmaceutical distributor in select U.S. states. The e-Commerce giant currently sells private label over-the-counter drugs through a partnership with Perrigo and is licensed to distribute medical devices in nearly all U.S. states.