CVS Health turning 1,500 stores into HealthHub locations | News Coverage from USA

CVS Health turning 1,500 stores into HealthHub locations

Get ready for less retail floor space and more room for health care services at one of your local CVS stores.

CVS Health is poised to expand a concept store focused on health care to 1,500 locations by the end of 2021, the company said Tuesday.

The drugstore chain launched the concept store, called HealthHUB, in the Houston area earlier this year.

The premise stems from the company’s effort to reduce its reliance on sales of retail goods and increase its commitment to health care services. The company recently closed 46 struggling stores as it competes with Amazon and other retail rivals for customers.

It’s also reducing floor space for slow-selling items like greeting cards and adding space in hundreds of stores for teeth-straightening service SmileDirectClub.

At the HealthHUBs, more than 20% of the floor space is devoted to health care services like wellness and personalized care.

For example, HealthHUB stores have space for yoga classes and extra room for CVS Minute nurse practitioners to perform services such as phlebotomy, diabetic screening and sleep apnea assessment.

CVS CEO Larry Merlo told USA TODAY in November that he plans to shift more retail space toward health purposes.

The company announced Tuesday that the new HealthHUBs would roll out first in Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, southern New Jersey and Tampa.

See the list: CVS closing 46 struggling stores

Straighten your teeth: ‘Hundreds’ of CVS Pharmacy stores to get SmileDirectClub shops

“By bringing those services to help them better manage their chronic diseases, we can really increase their awareness, their engagement, the experience with those services and ultimately help them manage their own diseases and be healthier, which in turn lowers overall health care costs,” CVS chief transformation officer Alan Lotvin told USA TODAY in February.

Follow USA TODAY reporter Nathan Bomey on Twitter @NathanBomey.

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