BENTONVILLE, Ark., May 5 While health care costscontinue to be a top concern for consumers, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT)is furthering its efforts to help customers save money by driving downprescription medication costs and providing ongoing savings through itspharmacy offerings.
Expected to save Wal-Mart customers millions annually, today'sannouncement is phase three of Wal-Mart's $4 Prescription Program, which nowcovers a 90-day prescription for $10, additional women's health medicationsand a new $4 over-the-counter (OTC) offer. The 90-day option gives morechoices to customers and physicians who may have been limited to mail orderprescriptions in the past.
"More and more people find health care, and particularly prescribedmedicines, difficult to afford. This is one of the reasons we continually workto take our $4 Prescription Program to the next level," said Dr. John Agwunobi,Wal-Mart senior vice president and president, health and wellness. "We'resucceeding in our efforts to deliver simple, affordable, quality pharmacysolutions for families struggling with the rising costs of health care. And,our customers -- and their budgets -- are seeing a dramatic difference."
Women's health products like Wal-Mart's Spring Valley-branded prenatalvitamins were also lowered to $4 as part of the $4 OTC program now availableat Wal-Mart Stores and Neighborhood Markets.
"There is no better time than Women's Health Month to strengthen ourcommitment to women by addressing some of their unique health care needs,"said Linda Dillman, executive vice president for benefits and risk managementfor Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. "By offering these medications at affordable prices,we are helping women make their health a top priority and live longer,healthier and happier lives."
"Access to affordable prescription medicines is vitally important to thehealth and well-being of Texans. I applaud Wal-Mart's efforts to make this areality through their $4 Program," said Governor Rick Perry (Texas).
Up to 95 percent of the prescriptions written in the majority oftherapeutic categories are included in the $4 Prescription Program availableat Wal-Mart, Neighborhood Market and Sam's Club pharmacies nationwide. Theaffordable prices for these prescriptions are available for commonlyprescribed dosages for up to 30-days or 90-days.
Launched in Tampa, Florida in September 2006, Wal-Mart's $4 PrescriptionProgram quickly expanded to 49 states (Wal-Mart does not operate in-storepharmacies in its North Dakota stores). Wal-Mart has also introduced a similardiscount program in Puerto Rico, Mexico and Brazil, bringing significantsavings to customers in those markets. Today, the program is available at themore than 4,000 Wal-Mart, Sam's Club and Neighborhood Market pharmaciesthroughout the United States and has saved Wal-Mart customers more than $1billion since its inception ($1,163,726,502.08 as of April 28, 2008 -- visithttp://www.livebetterindex.com for a state-by-state breakdown of savings).
Certain drugs are priced higher than $4 (for up to30-day supplies) and $10 (for 90-day supplies) in California, Colorado, Hawaii,Minnesota, Montana, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
Generic medications contain the same active ingredients as their"brand-name" counterparts, but cost significantly less. Consumers interestedin saving money through the program should ask their doctors if a generic isavailable for their prescription and is right for them.
For further information on the program, customers can call 1-800-WAL-MART,visit http://www.walmart.com/pharmacy or discuss the program with their localWal-Mart, Neighborhood Market or Sam's Club pharmacist.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. operates Wal-Mart discount stores, Supercenters,Neighborhood Markets and Sam's Club locations in the United States. TheCompany