A Study on
Insurance Services LLC.
September 18, 2020 Report
September 18, 2020
Walmart Insurance Services LLC
The new Avatar of Walmart
Walmart has consistently ranked number 1 on the Fortune 500 listing since 2014 and with their entrance into the Medicare Advantage ecosystem it looks like they intend to stay on top. While it may be a shock to some that Walmart, one of the biggest names in the retail industry, is entering the Medicare industry, there are signals that this has been a prolonged target since the early 2000’s.
A Timeline of Walmart's Healthcare Ecosystem Strategy
Speaking at the Foundation of Associated Industries of Florida's 2013 Health Care Affordability Summit, Marcus Osborne—Walmart's vice president of health and wellness payer relations—was asked whether the retailer plans to pursue retail clinics in rural areas. He said, "That's where we're going now:
full primary care services in five to seven years."
- Walmart launches Walmart Care Clinics in April.
- Clinics cost $40 for walk-in and $4 for employees.
- Walmart is able to price it that low, in part, because the clinics are staffed by nurse practitioners from Quadmed, a provider of on-site workplace clinics.
- Texas, South Carolina and Georgia become first states to have such clinics.
- Walmart teamed up with DirectHealth.com in October to launch Healthcare Begins Here, an in-store program designed to educate customers on health insurance options. Walmart assigned 2,700 insurance agents across its 4,300 U.S. locations through open enrollment season to help customers
determine if they are eligible through exchanges, Medicaid or Medicare options
- Walmart introduces Walmart wellness day.
- Walmart holds Americas biggest health fair - "Walmart wellness day" - on October 10th in over 4,000 stores.
- Free blood glucose, blood pressure, vision screenings, product samples and health insurance information are made available.
- In addition, more than 10,000 of Walmart’s licensed pharmacists offered immunizations in select stores.
- A collaboration with Anthem is announced in August to provide increased access to OTC medicines with an anticipated launch of January, 2019.
- Walmart tries to acquire Humana for an undisclosed amount but the acquisition fails.
- Walmart announces partnership with Beacon Health Options in November and opens the 1st mental health clinic in Texas. The partnership further expands in 2020.
- Walmart opens first health center in Dallas, Georgia on September 13th and opens 2 more in Georgia by early 2020.
- Appointments cost $40 for adults and $20 for children.
- By partnering with local providers, the new Walmart Health Center will deliver services including primary care, labs, X-ray and EKG, counseling, dental, optical, hearing, community health (nutritional services, fitness), health insurance education and enrollment all in one facility, conveniently located outside the store with a separate entrance for customers. The clinic will provide low, transparent pricing for key health services for local families, regardless of insurance status.
- Opens a new Health Center in Springdale, Arkansas on June 24th with plans to open more in the state.
- Acquired startup CareZone's medication management platform to help customers keep track of their prescriptions on June 15th.
- Partnered with PBM startup Capital Rx, which provides health plans real-time information on prescription drug prices on July 7th.
- Announces plan to open health centers in Florida on July 22nd.
- Walmart enters insurance market with Walmart Insurance Services LLC on July 7th.
According to Bloomberg, in 2018, Walmart’s pharmacy, optical, and OTC drug business generated $36 billion in revenue. With the introduction of Walmart Insurance Services LLC, coupled with the aggressive expansion strategy of their Health Centers, Walmart is sending a clear signal that they intent to disrupt the healthcare ecosystem, including Medicare Advantage. With cheaper alternatives and complete vertical integration, their business strategy looks at providing consumers the lowest cost of healthcare possible with maximum reach. The current healthcare environment, shaken up by the COVID-19 pandemic, may also work in Walmart’s favor. By providing Clinical options, in convenient locations, with medical care & medication fulfillment at highly competitive rates, has the potential to allow rapid expansion and gain customer loyalty.