Heart At Work™, #CVSHeartAtWork. Anthony Cocuzza, Store Manager, New York, NY.

Heart At Work

Celebrating our CVS Health® heroes

Every day, CVS Health heroes across the country bring their hearts to work to help people on their path to better health. They share a smile, an assuring voice, a helping hand. They are your neighborhood pharmacists, store managers, MinuteClinic® providers and so many more.

Read their stories, watch their videos, and celebrate our amazing heroes along with us.

The sounds of CVS Health hearts at work

Do you hear it? It’s part of our colleagues’ everyday routine, but it’s far from ordinary. Listen closely. It’s a sound we’ll never take for granted.

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Janeika Knight

Recognizing our heros

Do you know a CVS colleague who brings their heart to work to help people on their path to better health? We want to hear from you.

Nominate a colleague

Coronavirus is here, and we stand ready to help.

We encourage you to visit our COVID-19 resource center to learn more about what we are doing to help you manage your health during this time.

Learn more

Heart At Work: Megan Chesnet

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She’s 24, a pharmacy tech and administering desperately needed COVID-19 testing in her Phoenix, Arizona pharmacy.

It’s 8:30 AM and already a humid 92 degrees in Phoenix, Arizona where pharmacy technician Megan Chesnet is at the window ready to greet the first of nearly 60 patients who will drive through for COVID-19 testing. 

“We test approximately one patient every 10 minutes. We’re booked solid.” Megan explains.

In the past weeks, Arizona has been named one of the nation’s Coronavirus hotspots seeing a huge surge in cases just weeks after relaxing safety measures. Schools will now be delayed. Gyms, movie theaters and water parks once open, have been shuttered. Hospital beds are filling, in some areas to capacity. The testing CVS Health and Megan provides is desperately needed.

“When COVID-19 began in March, a lot of people here didn’t take it seriously, they didn’t wear masks and didn’t social distance. Now, they’re scared,” says Megan. “We’re helping people of all ages, even entire families.”
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Already a six-year veteran at CVS, at 24, Megan is remarkable. She easily connects with and comforts patients. And although she can’t hold their hands, she patiently walks them through the testing steps: How to apply the nasal swab, keep it in one nostril for 15 seconds, move it to the next nostril for another 15 seconds, then carefully seal it in a vile and deposit it in a container. “Nothing ever comes back into the pharmacy. I don’t touch anything. I honestly feel safer here than going to the grocery store,” she says.

Most of Megan’s patients are anxious, their symptoms make them feel uncomfortable. They’re worried about next steps and if needed whether hospital beds will be available. “I try to make the process stress free. I tell them we’re in this together,” offers Megan. “I really do care for our patients and I believe they know that care is genuine.”

Megan Chesnet coaches a patient, from behind the window at a CVS Pharmacy drive-thru location, about how to administer a COVID-19 nasal swab test.
Megan tests approximately one patient every 10 minutes.

“Megan was the first in her pharmacy to learn how to administer coronavirus testing and she’s taken the lead on training dozens of pharmacists and pharmacy techs in the region,” explains Region Director Tobin Zdarko. When she graduates from Arizona State University, she hopes to be a CVS Pharmacist.

“Being able to provide testing makes me feel part of something bigger than my work as a pharmacy tech,” shares Megan. “It’s been so positive for me to be involved in my community, to know I’m helping.”

Thank you, Megan, for putting others at ease with your big Heart At Work.

Meagan Chesnet, a CVS Pharmacy Technician, in her Phoenix, Arizona store.
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CVS Health joins the charge in collectively thinking “Beyond the Bag”

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It’s estimated that the U.S. alone uses 100 billion plastic bags per year, and less than 10 percent of these bags are recycled.https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2019-11/documents/2016_and_2017_facts_and_figures_data_tables_0.pdf

At the same time, the average retail plastic bag is only used for 12 minuteshttps://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2019-11/documents/2016_and_2017_facts_and_figures_data_tables_0.pdf, but can last 500 to 1,000 years on Earth.

CVS Health recognizes and shares the concerns that many people have about the impact of single-use plastics on our environment and believes the retail bag needs reinventing.
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That’s why CVS Health recently joined Closed Loop Partners, and other leading retailers, including Target and Walmart, to launch a new initiative to reinvent the single-use retail plastic bag.  The Beyond the Bag Initiative aims to identify, pilot and implement new design solutions and models to create an improved customer experience without unintended environmental consequences.  

“We came to this initiative with both the health of the planet and the health of all people in mind,” said Eileen Howard Boone, SVP, Corporate Social Responsibility & Philanthropy and Chief Sustainability Officer, CVS Health.  “We know they are inextricably linked.”

CVS Health’s participation in this initiative recognizes that reinventing the retail bag requires a coordinated industry approach and brings together many types of retailers to look at this question from a variety of angles.  The work will consider customers at all of the nearly 10,000 CVS Pharmacy locations, in rural, suburban and urban communities, where the need for a retail bag can be different.  Working with Closed Loop Partners and other companies that are part of this initiative, CVS Health will carefully consider the consumer experience as part of the work to innovate in this space.

The company’s participation in and its financial commitment to this initiative is just one step on its journey to transform health over the next decade. Launched in May, the company’s Transform Health 2030 corporate social responsibility roadmap outlines CVS Health’s commitment to positively impacting the people and communities it serves, while supporting the health of its business and the planet. In addition to working with the Beyond the Bag Initiative, CVS Health has set goals to reduce its overall environmental impacts and made commitments related to responsible sourcing and chemical management.

CVS Health’s commitment to this initiative is driven by the company’s purpose of helping people on their path to better health. Creating an innovative retail bag solution for the millions of customers the company serves will help to make both local communities and the whole planet a healthier place.

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CVS Pharmacy institutes face covering policy at all locations

CVS Pharmacy institutes face covering policy at all locations
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WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) Chief Operating Officer Jon Roberts provided the following update on the use of face coverings at CVS Pharmacy locations:

"Since the pandemic began, we've done everything we can to keep people safe and healthy. This includes requiring that store employees wear face coverings and encouraging our customers to do so as well. In any community with state or local laws mandating the use of face coverings, we've made that very clear through signage and other reminders.

"With the recent spike in COVID-19 infections, we're joining others in taking the next step and requiring all customers to wear face coverings when entering any of our stores throughout the country effective Monday, July 20. To be clear, we're not asking our store employees to play the role of enforcer. What we are asking is that customers help protect themselves and those around them by listening to the experts and heeding the call to wear a face covering."

More information on steps CVS Health has taken to address the COVID-19 pandemic is available at the company's frequently updated COVID-19 resource center.

About CVS Health

CVS Health employees are united around a common goal of becoming the most consumer-centric health company. We're evolving based on changing consumer needs and meeting people where they are, whether that's in the community at one of our nearly 10,000 local touchpoints, in the home, or in the palm of their hand. Our newest offerings from HealthHUB locations that are redefining what a pharmacy can be, to innovative programs that help manage chronic conditions are designed to create a higher-quality, simpler and more affordable experience. Learn more about how we're transforming health at www.cvshealth.com.

Media contact

T.J. Crawford
212-457-0583
crawfordt2@aetna.com

A medical face mask illustration in the shape of a CVS Health heart on a red background.
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CVS Pharmacy introduces new app feature for reading “talking” prescription labels

CVS Pharmacy introduces new app feature for reading “talking” prescription labels
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New Spoken Rx feature in the CVS Pharmacy app is the result of a collaboration with the American Council of the Blind

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Pharmacy announced that it has developed Spoken Rx, a new feature of the CVS Pharmacy app that can read a specific type of label for patients with visual impairments and those who cannot read standard print labels. Spoken Rx is the first in-app prescription reader application to be developed by a national retail pharmacy.

By the end of 2020, 1,500 CVS Pharmacy locations will be equipped to affix special RFID labels to prescription vials. When the RFID labels are scanned by Spoken Rx in the CVS Pharmacy app, which can be accessed by users using Siri or Google Assistant on their phones, prescription label information will be spoken out loud. This information, which is important for patient safety and adherence, currently includes patient name, medication name, dosage and directions and will be enhanced to include additional information over the months to come. Spoken Rx will be available in all CVS Pharmacy locations by the end of 2021.

Enrollment in the program is seamless and can be done either over the phone or in store where a pharmacist can ensure the patient's app is appropriately set up for the service. Spoken Rx is free to CVS Pharmacy patients and the app will read prescription label information aloud in either English or Spanish.

"The in-app feature gives patients more flexibility, providing the pertinent prescription information out loud wherever and whenever they need it," said Ryan Rumbarger, Senior Vice President, Store Operations at CVS Health. "Spoken Rx provides a more seamless experience to our patients who are visually impaired."

Today's announcement is the result of collaboration between CVS Pharmacy and the American Council of the Blind, which worked with CVS and tested the technology throughout its development.

"Spoken Rx is a positive step that offers same-day, access for prescriptions filled in CVS stores, allowing for a greater level of privacy, safety, and independence for blind and visually impaired customers of all ages," said Kim Charlson, immediate past president of the American Council of the Blind." We're pleased about this addition to the existing braille, audio, and large print accessible prescription label offerings provided by CVS Caremark and CVS.com."

For more information on Spoken Rx and a list of active stores please visit CVS.com/spokenrx

About CVS Health

CVS Health employees are united around a common goal of becoming the most consumer-centric health company. We're evolving based on changing consumer needs and meeting people where they are, whether that's in the community at one of our nearly 10,000 local touchpoints, in the home, or in the palm of their hand. Our newest offerings from HealthHUB locations that are redefining what a pharmacy can be, to innovative programs that help manage chronic conditions are designed to create a higher-quality, simpler and more affordable experience. Learn more about how we're transforming health at www.cvshealth.com.

About American Council of the Blind (ACB)

American Council of the Blind is a national consumer-based advocacy organization working on behalf of blind and visually impaired individuals throughout the country with members organized through seventy state and special interest affiliates. ACB is dedicated to improving the quality of life, equality of opportunity and independence of all people who have visual impairments. Their members and affiliated organizations have a long history of commitment to the advancement of policies and programs which will enhance independence for people who are blind and visually impaired. More information about ACB can be found by visiting www.acb.org.

Media contacts

Stephanie Cunha
CVS Pharmacy
Stephanie.Cunha@CVSHealth.com

Kim Charlson
American Council of the Blind
Phone: 617-501-5752
kimcharlson@acb.org

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Heart At Work: Jun Park

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Our pharmacists bring their hearts to work every day.

They provide sound information that helps their patients stay on their medications, and create beautiful human connections when they’re needed most. You’ll see what we mean when you watch the story of one high school student, Casey, and his pharmacist, Jun Park.

“Casey was born with Cerebral Palsy. Jun is our pharmacist and we love him dearly. He’s been with us all 17 years,” says Beth Roher, Casey’s mom.

Beth Roher and Jun Park talking in the consultation area inside of a CVS Pharmacy.
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Heart At Work: Jackie DeJesus

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Jackie DeJesus, wearing a headset and working on a laptop computer in her home office.

Undaunted by COVID-19, Jackie used the reach of CVS to get our member the medication he needed. 

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, LorenName changed for privacy purposes. thought he would be OK if he just followed the CDC guidelines and stayed home. Even though Loren never contracted COVID-19, his health was eventually impacted by the pandemic. Luckily, his case manager, Jackie, came to his rescue and quickly worked across CVS Health to provide a solution.

Loren has a history of psoriatic arthritis, among other health concerns, and was taking hydroxychloroquine to control his painful symptoms. He had been using his local pharmacy to fill his medications. But after hydroxychloroquine was named as a potential treatment for COVID-19, his pharmacy told him that they had exhausted their supply and couldn’t get any more. Not knowing what else to do, Loren began rationing his medication and eventually ran out too.

Jackie DeJesus, a registered nurse case manager on the Clinical Services Care Management team reached out to Loren because she saw he was prescribed hydroxychloroquine and heard there were shortages. “He was so happy to hear from us. He was very worried that his arthritis and skin conditions would quickly worsen and, because of the pandemic, didn’t feel like he had any choices,” said Jackie. “Loren didn’t feel safe shopping around for his medication since he was following quarantine protocols, and even if he located the medication at another pharmacy, he was concerned about the safety of leaving his community.”

Jackie explained to Loren that we had dedicated CVS pharmacists who can help. She worked with Caremark customer service to not only locate the medication, but also set up a 90-day mail order delivery right to his home.

Within 48 hours, Loren started taking his prescribed dosage and was better able to control his painful symptoms. He’s now aware of the Caremark mail order option and is excited to use it for all his medications during the pandemic and beyond. He is also thrilled to have Jackie as his personal contact.

Karen Lynch said, “The Aetna case managers provide a tremendous opportunity to connect with our members and identify solutions even when they don’t know those options exist. In this case, we not only helped a member overcome physical pain, we worked across CVS Health to simplify his access to care.”

Thank you, Jackie, for bringing your heart to work to help your patients when they need it most.

Jackie DeJesus, wearing a headset and working on a laptop computer in her home office.
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Expanding COVID-19 testing for those who need it most

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Communities across the country are grappling with how to recover and rebuild during COVID-19, especially in traditionally underserved neighborhoods hit hard by the pandemic. As just one example, although African Americans make up 14 percent of the overall population in Michigan https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/MI/PST045219, they account for approximately 31 percent of COVID-19 cases and 40 percent of deaths caused by the virus in the state.https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus/0,9753,7-406-98163_98173---,00.html

We firmly believe that increasing the availability of COVID-19 testing and improving access — especially for those who need it most — is a crucial step toward recovery. Given our local presence in communities across the country, we are uniquely positioned to play a significant role in community-based testing efforts.

We are expanding access to testing in communities and neighborhoods most impacted by COVID-19, even beyond the more than 1,200 testing sites we have available at CVS Pharmacy drive-thru locations across the country.  To accomplish this we’ve partnered with national organizations such as the National Medical Association, local community groups including free and charitable clinics and community colleges, and state government and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Working with our community partners is an important part of our comprehensive testing strategy, as it allows us to tap into the network of a trusted organization with strong community ties,” said David Casey, Chief Diversity Officer, and Vice President, Workforce Strategies, for CVS Health. “Given our longstanding commitment to underserved communities, it only made sense to expand our testing efforts to the areas of greatest need and leverage our partners to help get the word out.”

A woman holds a nasal swab as part of a COVID-19 test while a medical professional, (wearing personal protective equipment) advises her on to use the swab to conduct the test.

These test sites are hosted by our community-based partners within their facilities, so they are familiar to and more easily accessible for nearby residents who may not have a personal vehicle or reliable transportation. All of our community-based test sites can accommodate patients arriving on foot, and appointments are made by phone, so patients do not need internet access. Signage is offered in English and Spanish, and testing is available to patients at all of our test sites at no cost.

At this time, we are planning to open ten community-based testing locations.

Our expanded testing efforts are just one example of CVS Health’s commitment to diverse communities, which also includes sponsoring free Project Health screenings in predominately Black/African American and Hispanic/Latinx neighborhoods, workforce development programs that break down barriers to gainful employment, and supporting a variety of efforts that address Social Determinants of Health.

“Having seen the data that pointed to disparate impacts in Black and Brown communities, we knew we needed to do more when it comes to providing testing access,” said Casey. “Through our community testing sites, we are able to meet people where they are, bringing to life our company’s Purpose of helping people on their path to better health.”

Several people walking into a CVS Health community test center in Atlanta, Georgia.
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CVS Health and American Lung Association join forces to combat COVID-19 and protect against future respiratory viruses

CVS Health and American Lung Association join forces to combat COVID-19 and protect against future respiratory viruses
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In-store fundraising campaign will support new COVID-19 Action Initiative

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) and the American Lung Association have launched a campaign at CVS Pharmacy locations to support the Lung Association's COVID-19 Action Initiative, which will expand COVID-19 research and fund the development of new vaccines, detection tests and treatment to defend against future respiratory viruses.

"Our customers have consistently responded with support and enthusiasm for our nonprofit relationships, and we certainly expect that to be the case with an organization whose work has never been more important," said Eileen Howard Boone, Senior Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility & Philanthropy and Chief Sustainability Officer for CVS Health. "This campaign will be available both in-store and online, giving customers a number of ways to get involved and support the critical efforts of the American Lung Association — an organization with which we've worked for a long time."

The Lung Association's COVID-19 Action Initiative funding will be used to expand its ongoing respiratory research program within the current studies of the Airways Clinical Research Centers Network as well as to create new research awards and grants to advance knowledge around this new lung disease and its terrible effects. The funding will also help enhance critical public health measures through education and advocacy and establish an advanced network of government, private industry and public health organizations to try to prevent future respiratory virus pandemics through access to vaccines and antivirals.

"For the more than 36 million people in the U.S. who live with a lung disease, as well as communities of color who are more vulnerable to complications from COVID-19, it is especially critical that we focus on reducing the spread and impact of deadly respiratory viruses," said Harold Wimmer, President and CEO of the American Lung Association. "CVS Health has been a committed partner to the American Lung Association, helping us address the most pressing lung health issues. This year is no different, as CVS Health has stepped forward as our lead sponsor for our COVID-19 Action Initiative."

The in-store fundraising campaign, which launched Sunday, June 21, will run at approximately 9,900 CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide through Saturday, July 18. Throughout these four weeks, customers can donate to the American Lung Association's COVID-19 Action Initiative at the register and online at Lung.org/cvs.

"The technology updates we've made to allow contactless giving to this campaign at the point-of-sale complement many other innovations we've put in place during this pandemic to making shopping easier for our CVS Pharmacy customers," said Ryan Rumbarger, Senior Vice President, Retail Store Operations, CVS Pharmacy.

As the oldest voluntary health organization in the country, the American Lung Association pioneered the model of using education, advocacy and research to virtually eradicate tuberculosis in the United States. The organization is using those same principles to help address the pandemic by meeting the challenges of COVID-19 and future respiratory viruses.

About American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.

About CVS Health

CVS Health employees are united around a common goal of becoming the most consumer-centric health company in the world. We're evolving based on changing consumer needs and meeting people where they are, whether that's in the community at one of our nearly 10,000 local touchpoints, in the home, or in the palm of their hand. Our newest offerings from HealthHUB locations that are redefining what a pharmacy can be, to innovative programs that help manage chronic conditions are designed to create a higher-quality, simpler and more affordable experience. Learn more about how we're transforming health at www.cvshealth.com.

Media contact

Courtney Tavener
401-712-3698
Courtney.Tavener@CVSHealth.com

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Age-friendly care for older adults

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People over the age of 65 make up an increasingly large part of our population. By 2030, it is predicted that there will be 74 million older adults in the United States. For many of us, this includes our parents, grandparents, friends and neighbors. Older adults also make up a growing percentage of the patients seen at MinuteClinic.

Recently, The John A. Hartford Foundation sponsored a partnership between MinuteClinic, Case Western Reserve University Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement to produce training tools and resources that will be used at MinuteClinic to further improve and evolve how we care for older adults. 

This training will enable MinuteClinic to move towards the adoption of the Age-Friendly care in every clinic nationwide for patients 65 years or older, by the beginning of 2021. These age-friendly visits will include questions around the “4Ms Framework” — What Matters, Medication, Mentation and Mobility, and providers will also share healthy aging tips and suggestions older patients can implement in their everyday life.

Research shows that providing the older adult population with specific, age-friendly care has significant benefits, including a reduction in the number of emergency department visits, hospitalizations and hospital readmissions, improved mobility, a reduction in medication-related problems and early identification of memory loss and depression.

By applying the “4Ms,” MinuteClinic providers will be able to positively impact many of our patients, in a setting that they are comfortable and familiar with. For those opting to seek care through E-Clinic visits, providers will also be able to assess the “4Ms” while patients are in the safety and comfort of their own home.

MinuteClinic is currently implementing the “4Ms Framework” across all locations, with the goal of being recognized as an exemplar of age-friendly care in early 2021. MinuteClinic is pleased to be the largest retail clinic network in the U.S. to adopt age-friendly care system-wide.

An older woman smiles while relaxing at the beach with two female friends.
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