Commitment to women’s health
At CVS Health, we bring our hearts to everything we do, including helping to ensure easier, local access to health care for women.
Women play the leading role in making health care decisions for their families. But they often face barriers when it comes to taking care of themselves. Women of color encounter significant racial disparities that negatively affect their health and health care.
CVS Health is committed to making women's health care more accessible, equitable and personalized. We want to partner with women for every meaningful moment of their health journey.
Our personalized and accessible solutions empowering you on your health journey
At CVS Health, we know that equal access to contraception empowers women and families to make decisions about their own futures. To help people on this important life journey, we have over 9,900 CVS Pharmacy locations that offer necessary and convenient contraception support, including filling birth control prescriptions and offering over-the-counter contraception. In addition, in over 1,800 CVS Pharmacy locations, CVS pharmacists educate patients and prescribe and fill a birth control prescription, without a doctor visit.
Through CVS Caremark, we also offer patients a variety of convenient options to obtain birth control and reproductive health products. We help ensure accessible and affordable medications through our mail order pharmacy and the more than 68,000 retail pharmacies in our CVS Caremark network. Patients can order and pick up prescriptions ordered through the app, online, in person, or through a home delivery program.
Additionally, in 1,100+ MinuteClinic locations in 35 states and Washington, D.C., our nurse practitioners and physician assistants prescribe birth control as part of the 125 different kinds of primary care enabled health services we offer. Our presence in communities across the country matters because over 19 million women currently live in contraceptive “deserts,” parts of the country where they cannot access a health center offering the full range of contraception methods.
Childbirth is one of the most momentous occasions in the life of a woman and her family. Yet childbirth is not always safe, and outcomes can vary widely. For example, about 700 women die each year in the U.S. as a result of pregnancy or delivery complications. Black women experience rates of severe maternal morbidity and mortality nearly three times
To help improve maternity outcomes, CVS Health is supporting initiatives that address the four pillars of maternal health: family planning and intention, prenatal care, hospital delivery care and postpartum support. We have committed $5 million over the next five years to invest in community-based programs designed to reduce maternal mortality in diverse populations.
CVS Health also provides the following programs to address maternal health:
Aetna Enhanced Maternity Program: This innovative program uses the combined power of analytics and a premier nurse care management team to support eligible members across their entire maternal health journey, from preconception to pregnancy to postpartum. Nurses provide hand-in-hand support for individuals embarking on a fertility journey, helping to improve their well-being in pregnancy, manage a condition or provide access to social or mental well-being support. Members also can access a genetics program to receive guidance on testing recommendations at a lower cost. Informative resources are available to support members in decision making with their providers every step of the way.
Aetna Maternity Matters: Maternity Matters supports expecting Medicaid members during pregnancy and postpartum. The program provides care management focused on controlling risk factors and co-morbidities, providing individualized care planning, and reducing maternal morbidity. The program uses advanced analytics to identify members early in their pregnancy journey and connect them with obstetrician case managers to identify health and social concerns. Case managers work closely with members’ providers and other community-based organizations to ensure members can access education and quality, culturally competent care.
Preeclampsia Prevention: Preeclampsia, a leading, preventable cause of severe maternal morbidity, maternal death, preterm birth and low birthweight, is 60 percent more common in Black women than in White women. Additionally, Black women who have the condition experience poorer outcomes, including progression to eclampsia and, in rare cases, death. The Aetna Enhanced Maternity Program provides high-risk pregnant members with a personalized prenatal care kit that includes education about preeclampsia risk factors and low-dose aspirin, clinically proven to be a low-cost and effective way to lower the risk of this condition.
CVS Health’s MinuteClinic locations offer a robust set of essential women’s health and other primary care enabled services. In addition to providing access to birth control care, MinuteClinic offers pregnancy evaluation, cervical cancer screening, referrals for mammograms, and sexual and other reproductive health needs. MinuteClinic providers also can administer the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, and most CVS HealthHUB® locations can conduct pap smears and pelvic exams.
Additionally, MinuteClinic provides vaccines that are vital in pregnancy to protect mom and baby from serious illness. These services are important because a large number of pregnant people remain unvaccinated for influenza, Tdap and COVID-19, despite the fact that these vaccines help prevent severe respiratory disease.
Empowering Parents-to-Be: In collaboration with Every Mother Counts, CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation have produced a series of on-demand videos and supporting resources for expecting parents called Choices in Childbirth. This first-of-its-kind film series and resource hub educates people about pregnancy and birth options and helps them take an active role in their own maternity journey.
Improving Obstetric Outcomes for Black Maternity Patients: CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation are working with America’s Essential Hospitals to address maternal mortality and morbidity rates. Through this partnership, 12 hospitals have received funding to develop evidence-based programs that improve obstetric care for Black pregnant people, focused on enhancing accessibility to care, patient engagement and education.
Educating Providers on Preeclampsia Prevention: CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation are supporting the National Association of Free & Charitable Clinics in order to provide educational and clinical training for providers in nine clinics across the U.S. to help identify women at risk for preeclampsia.
Helping to Boost COVID-19 Vaccination in Pregnancy: To promote the safety of COVID-19 vaccines for pregnant people, CVS Health recently partnered with the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine to create a series of brief videos featuring diverse patients and providers and offered in both English and Spanish.
CVS Health supports legislative proposals to address women’s and maternal health, many of which are included in the comprehensive Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2021, which was signed into law by President Biden on November 30, 2021. To improve access to contraception, we also are actively working to increase the number of states that allow pharmacists to prescribe.