Pharmacy Chains, Other Retailers to Offer COVID-19 Testing

March 16, 2020

Walgreens, CVS Health, and Target said they will start providing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) testing in their parking lots.

Walgreens, CVS Health, and Target said they will start providing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) testing in their parking lots.

“Given our physical presence in communities across the country and ability to reach millions of consumers with innovative, local solutions, we’re in a unique position to help address the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re working with the administration and other partners to help facilitate COVID-19 testing with a common goal of increasing frequency and efficiency, “ CVS Health said in a press release.1

Details of the testing are still being worked out based on the number of tests available and geographic needs, according to CVS. “It’s important for CVS Pharmacy customers to understand that they won’t be impacted. We expect testing will take place in secure areas of parking lots at select stores–not inside–and individuals being tested will not have to leave their cars.”

Walgreens also said will dedicate temporary space at select locations where non-Walgreens health personnel will administer COVID-19 testing.

“The testing locations and timing will be announced at a later date in collaboration with the Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The company will work closely with stakeholders at participating locations to ensure the health and safety of customers and team members,” Walgreens said in a press release.2

“These are extraordinary times that call for extraordinary measures, and Walgreens is honored to join the Administration, CMS, CDC and others in our industry to work together in providing access to government COVID-19 testing,” said Richard Ash-worth, president of Walgreens. “Collaboration with health officials, the government, and across our industry and other sectors is critical at this time.”

“Leading retailers are doing everything they can to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. This includes stepping up during this global health crisis to assist with drive-through COVID-19 testing sites on their store properties,” said Brian Dodge, president of the Retail Industry Leaders Association, Progressive Grocer reported.3 “Utilizing parking lots and partnering with the government to expedite testing is paramount right now as everyone works to ensure public health and safety. This is an unprecedented situation that demands an all hands-on deck approach, and community retailers are eager to do their part.”

Both Walgreens and CVS Health are also waiving delivery fees for all eligible prescriptions during the coronavirus crisis. “Walgreens pharmacists continue to collaborate with health plan partners, physicians, and state officials to ensure that patients have access to the medications they need through services like 90-day refills and early refill authorizations,” Walgreens said in a press release.4

The drugstore chain is offering free delivery on any purchase on their website, with no minimum purchase required.

Walgreens is reminding customers about services such as Walgreens Pharmacy Chat, which is available 24/7 online and through the Walgreens mobile app, as well as pharmacy drive thru. “Customers are also able to use the drive thru to purchase select products,” Walgreens said.