Preparing for this year’s flu season

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COVID-19 is continuing to affect communities across the country, and yet, we have another potentially harmful virus to worry about – the flu.

Health care providers are busy meeting pandemic-related demands, including COVID-19 testing occurring at medical offices and drive-thru locations like CVS Pharmacy stores. In addition, America’s emergency rooms and critical care units are stressed with caring for COVID-19 patients, and that’s likely to get worse as we head into the winter months. Because of this, it’s crucial that we reduce the number of cold and flu cases and flu-related hospitalizations as much as possible to preserve our much-needed health care resources.

The good news is, there are simple things we can all do to help protect ourselves from the flu and boost our immunity during the fall and winter months. This begins with getting your annual flu vaccination. If you have not yet received your flu shot, it’s important that you get vaccinated right away.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle helps to promotes your ability to fight off seasonal illnesses like influenza, pneumonia and the common cold. Improving your diet, expanding your exercise routine and getting plenty of rest are all important ways to keep up your immunity.

Eating a well-balanced diet that includes foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals is also important, including fruits and vegetables. It is also important to maintain a healthy weight as being obesity puts people at risk for many other serious chronic diseases and increases the risk of severe illness from the flu. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/index.htm.

Now more than ever it is important to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Stay home if you feel ill and try to avoid large crowds. The same things that can help slow the spread of COVID-19 are also important actions in reducing transmission of the flu, as well.

Most flu vaccinations available – including the primary vaccine provided at MinuteClinic and CVS Pharmacy locations nationwide – are the quadrivalent vaccine, which protects against four different flu strains – two types of influenza A and two types of influenza B.  Some other flu vaccines protect against three or two strains of the flu. For those 65+, the high-dose version of the quadrivalent influenza vaccine is recommended because it produces more than 4x the antigens to fight off the virus. Those 65+ should also receive a pneumonia vaccine, if they have not done so recently.

Learn more about how CVS Health is making flu shots safe and convenient, or make an appointment to get a flu shot.

A female CVS Pharmacy Technician giving a flu shot to a male customer seated on an table.
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Building patient engagement by connecting local communities to a cohesive health care network

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Leaders and consumers across the country are speaking out about the ways the pandemic has highlighted failures in health care. But health care was broken long before COVID-19, and millions suffer as a result of the industry’s failure to meet and respond to the needs of individuals and patients: according to the CDC, 60% of Americans live with one or more chronic condition. We are seeing the consequences of this failure play out in real time. 

The need to reimagine health care is urgent, and CVS Health is in the proper position to tackle the challenge. In our mission to help people on their path to better health, we understand that health and wellness is a very personal journey, and we are creating a more connected network of support to respond to individuals’ immediate and chronic health care concerns. 

Our unique and extensive health care experience is transforming the industry. Unlike traditional health care companies, CVS Health is embedded in communities, often a routine part of daily life. We work to know our customers personally — their challenges, common questions, needs, and aspirations. Sitting at the intersection of institutional health care and personal, daily life, CVS Health has unique insight into the health of local communities as well as the gaps in the patient experience. As a result, our approach to health care is holistic, accessible, responsive, and highly personalized.

By combining the data, services, and capabilities of our providers, health plans, community partners, health technology, and pharmacists, we unlock new avenues for proactive, preventive, and personalized care. In our model, new and meaningful channels for health care offer individualized, daily support. Our HealthHUB® locations provide an example of this approach, representing a new, critical health care channel for communities.

Launched in 2018, HealthHUB locations combine expanded in-store clinical services, upgraded virtual care and telehealth, personalized guidance, and individual pharmacy recommendations with community resources, offering a supportive network that addresses both the clinical and social determinants of health. At a HealthHUB location, every customer is seen and treated as a unique individual, and personalized guidance is customized to each person’s schedule, budget, and needs. 

The personalized in-store HealthHUB experience is coupled with integrated care management and health plan benefits optimization, resulting in continuous support, regardless of whether an individual is in-store or at home. The resources available through a HealthHUB mean that patients can access everything they need to manage their health whenever and wherever is right for them, keeping them on track with care plans and offering new resources for support. This is especially powerful for those managing the arduous daily demands of one or more chronic conditions.

By offering a patient-centered engagement model for care, our HealthHUB locations can improve individual health outcomes, leading to the successful management of chronic conditions, fewer out-of-pocket costs, and avoided medical procedures and emergency services. Ultimately, these individual successes have an aggregate effect, uplifting the health of entire communities. In this way, CVS Health is helping individuals, families, and communities stem the tide of preventable and reversible chronic conditions. 

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Flu shots now available at CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic

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Two-thirds of Americans say they plan to get a flu shot this year, with 54 percent planning on getting their vaccine earlier than last year

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — With the ongoing health impacts of COVID-19 on local communities, CVS Health is reminding the public that it is more important than ever to stay current with vaccinations and other routine health care needs. By getting a flu shot this fall and taking other proactive measures to improve general health and immunity, individuals and families can protect themselves against seasonal flu, help safeguard the overall health of the community and minimize the impact on health care resources.

According to a survey commissioned by CVS Health"Flu Intention" Survey, commissioned by CVS Health in July 2020. and conducted among a general population of U.S. consumers, the impact of COVID-19 is significantly influencing individuals' likelihood to get a flu shot this season. Results have shown that consumers' intention to get vaccinated has been increasing month over month, with 66 percent of those surveyed in July saying they definitely or likely will get a flu shot this season, compared to 34 percent of those surveyed in January 2020. In addition, 54 percent of consumers surveyed indicated that they plan to get their immunization earlier than last year.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that individuals make plans to get vaccinated early in the fall, before flu season begins, and ideally no later than the end of October.

"We know our patients and customers are doing everything they can to keep their families as healthy as possible, while minimizing potential exposure to the flu and COVID-19," said Jon Roberts, Chief Operating Officer, CVS Health. "Because it can take two weeks for the vaccine to build immunity, we encourage all of our patients to get their shot in September or early October, before flu season peaks."

Flu shots are now available at the nearly 10,000 CVS Pharmacy and approximately 1,100 MinuteClinic locations across the country. Both CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic, the retail health clinic of CVS Health inside select CVS Pharmacy and Target stores, offer convenient options for people of all ages to get their flu shot, seven days a week with expanded evening and weekend hours.

"Getting your flu shot is a great way to be proactive about your health and the health of your community this year," said Angela Patterson, DNP, FNP-BC, NEA-BC, FAANP, Chief Nurse Practitioner Officer, MinuteClinic and Vice President, CVS Health. "It protects both the individual and those around them who may be more vulnerable to serious complications from the flu, such as infants and young children, older adults, and people with certain chronic health conditions."

This year, the company is taking additional steps to help patients and colleagues feel safe during the entire immunization process. All patients must wear a face covering and will have their temperature taken prior to the immunization. Pharmacists and MinuteClinic providers administering vaccines will wear personal protection equipment (PPE) and will observe enhanced cleaning protocols.

Patients may schedule an immunization appointment with a MinuteClinic provider at MinuteClinic.com, or check the website to see if walk-in appointments are available in their area. Walk-in appointments are also welcome at CVS Pharmacy throughout flu season.

Starting in September, CVS Pharmacy patients will also be able to make vaccination appointments with a pharmacist by visiting CVS.com, the CVS app, or by texting FLU to 287898. They also will be able to complete a digital intake form prior to their visit to limit in-person contact at the time of vaccination.

In addition, and for a limited time while supplies last in participating states, customers will receive a $5 off $20 shopping pass when they get a flu shot at CVS Pharmacy or MinuteClinic, valid August 18 through October 31. Patients who receive a flu shot at CVS Pharmacy or MinuteClinic locations inside select Target stores will receive a $5 Target coupon.Offer available 8/17/20 to 10/31/20, while supplies last. You will receive a merchandise coupon valid for 1-time use at CVS Pharmacy or Longs Drugs locations. Terms and conditions apply. See coupon for details. $5 savings applied to total qualifying minimum purchase of $20 (after other coupons and discounts are applied). Coupon cannot be issued or redeemed at CVS Pharmacy or Longs Drugs locations in Target stores, or in any location in AR, NJ and NY. Offer not valid at MinuteClinic locations in MA, NJ, NY, PA and RI. Limit 1 per customer.

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.

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Mary Gattuso
Mary.Gattuso@CVSHealth.com

Matthew Blanchette
Matthew.Blanchette@CVSHealth.com

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CVS Health expands COVID-19 testing capabilities by adding 77 additional drive-thru test sites in Florida

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CVS Health now has a total of 298 drive-thru test sites across the state

Company adds new independent third-party laboratory partners to help improve lab turnaround time for the delivery of COVID-19 test results

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — In an ongoing effort to help slow the spread of the virus, CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) today expanded its COVID-19 testing program by deploying 77 additional test sites at select CVS Pharmacy drive-thru locations across Florida. The opening of these new test sites on Friday, August 21 add to the 221 locations previously opened in Florida.

The 77 additional test sites opening across the state this week are among the more than 1,900 locations CVS Health has opened since May and expand the company's overall testing capacity.

In addition to increasing the number of drive-thru sites, CVS Health has expanded its network of independent third-party lab partners in an effort to help improve turnaround time for the delivery of test results. Given the steps CVS Health has taken, the majority of test results across the country will generally be available within 2 to 5 days.

"Our national scale and local community presence enable us to uniquely expand people's access to safe and effective COVID-19 testing options and respond to a need for increased testing capacity," said Emmanuel Kolady, Senior Vice President, CVS Health. "We remain grateful to our frontline colleagues who make these testing sites possible and whose dedication has allowed us to keep our stores and MinuteClinics open for customers seeking supplies and patients who need care."

Self-swab tests are no cost to patients and will be available to individuals meeting CDC criteria, in addition to state and age guidelines.COVID-19 tests are no cost to patients with insurance or through a program for the uninsured funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Patients must register in advance at CVS.com to schedule an appointment. Patients will be required to stay in their cars and will be directed to the pharmacy drive-thru window or a location in the parking lot at a few stores, where they will be provided with a test kit and given instructions, and a CVS Pharmacy team member will observe the self-swab process to ensure it is done properly.

Testing will not take place inside any retail locations, and CVS Pharmacy, HealthHUB and MinuteClinic will continue to serve customers and patients.

The additional testing sites in Florida include:

  • CVS Pharmacy, 277 West State Road 436, Altamonte Springs, FL 32714

  • CVS Pharmacy, 24800 South Tamiami Trail, Bonita Springs, FL 34134

  • CVS Pharmacy, 12080 South Jog Road, Boynton Beach, FL 33437

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5403 University Parkway, Bradenton, FL 34201

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5310 45th Street East, Bradenton, FL 34203

  • CVS Pharmacy, 909 East Lumsden Road, Brandon, FL 33511

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1003 Santa Barbara Boulevard, Cape Coral, FL 33991

  • CVS Pharmacy, 700 W. Norvell Bryant Highway, Citrus Hills, FL 34442

  • CVS Pharmacy, 4405 US Highway 27, Clermont, FL 34711

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1640 US Highway 27, Clermont, FL 34714

  • CVS Pharmacy, 4550 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek, FL 33073

  • CVS Pharmacy, 4650 West Hillsboro Boulevard, Coconut Creek, F 33073

  • CVS Pharmacy, 49581 Highway 27, Davenport, FL 33837

  • CVS Pharmacy, 39902 Highway 27, Davenport, FL 33837

  • CVS Pharmacy, 2920 Davie Road, Davie, FL 33314

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1891 LPGA Boulevard, Daytona Beach, FL 32117

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1995 North C.R. 19A, Eustis, FL 32726

  • CVS Pharmacy, 24450 State Route 44, Eustis, FL 32726

  • CVS Pharmacy, 11300 State Road 82, Fort Myers, FL 33905

  • CVS Pharmacy, 9170 Daniels Parkway, Fort Myers, FL 33912

  • CVS Pharmacy, 7581 Winkler Road, Fort Myers, FL 33908

  • CVS Pharmacy, 16961 Alico Mission Way, Fort Myers, FL 33908

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1081 Beal Parkway, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547

  • CVS Pharmacy, 2303 SW 75th Street, Gainesville, FL 32607

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1621 SW 13th Street, Gainesville, FL 32608

  • CVS Pharmacy, 800 North Orange Avenue, Green Cove Springs, FL 32043

  • CVS Pharmacy, 901 North Federal Highway US Rt 1, Hollywood, FL 33109

  • CVS Pharmacy, 28740 South Dixie Highway, Homestead, FL 33033

  • CVS Pharmacy, 24799 SW 112th Avenue, Homestead, FL 33032

  • CVS Pharmacy, 9509 San Jose Boulevard, Jacksonville, FL 32257

  • CVS Pharmacy, 900 East Main Street, Lake Butler, FL 32054

  • CVS Pharmacy, 283 SW Baya Drive, Lake City, FL 32025

  • CVS Pharmacy, 2536 US Highway 92, East Lakeland, FL 33801

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1005 South Ohio Avenue, Live Oak, FL 32064

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5590 North Wickham Road, Melbourne, FL 32940

  • CVS Pharmacy, 12650 SW 88 Street, Miami, FL 33186

  • CVS Pharmacy, 2393 SW 67th Avenue, Miami, FL 33155

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5748 SW 40th Street South, Miami, FL 33155

  • CVS Pharmacy, 3700 NW 199 Street, Miami Gardens, FL 33169

  • CVS Pharmacy, 16001 Miramar Parkway, Miramar, FL 33027

  • CVS Pharmacy, 8901 Miramar Parkway, Miramar, FL 33025

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5585 Golden Gate Parkway, Naples, FL 34116

  • CVS Pharmacy, 6800 Collier Boulevard, Naples, FL 34114

  • CVS Pharmacy, 7380 Davis Boulevard, Naples, FL 34104

  • CVS Pharmacy, 11500 Ridge Road, New Port Richey, FL 34654

  • CVS Pharmacy, 6042 SW Highway 200, Ocala, FL 34476

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1720 W Highway 326, Ocala, FL 34475

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1551 County Road 220, Orange Park, FL 32073

  • CVS Pharmacy, 13960 Landstar Boulevard, Orlando, FL 32824

  • CVS Pharmacy, 7001 Old Winter Garden Road, Orlando, FL 32835

  • CVS Pharmacy, 9975 Lake Underhill Road, Orlando, FL 32825

  • CVS Pharmacy, 7665 West Colonial Drive, Orlando, FL 32818

  • CVS Pharmacy, 3502 Edgewater Drive, Orlando, FL 32804

  • CVS Pharmacy, 4974 North Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32806

  • CVS Pharmacy, 8981 Conroy Windemere Road, Orlando, FL 32835

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1030 Lockwood Boulevard, Oviedo, FL 32756

  • CVS Pharmacy, 4500 Donald Ross Road, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33401

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1701 North University Drive, Pembroke Pines, FL 33024

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5301 North Palafox Street, Pensacola, FL 32505

  • CVS Pharmacy, 3 S Pompano Parkway, Pompano Beach, FL 33069

  • CVS Pharmacy, 7120 Ridge Road, Port Richey, FL 34668

  • CVS Pharmacy, 2873 SW Port St. Lucie Blvd., Port St. Lucie, FL 34953

  • CVS Pharmacy, 3724 84th Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34243

  • CVS Pharmacy, 7563 SE Maricamp Rd., Silver Springs Shore, FL 34472

  • CVS Pharmacy, 301 3rd Street South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701

  • CVS Pharmacy, 3426 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg, FL 33711

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5345 66th Street North, St. Petersburg, FL 33709

  • CVS Pharmacy, 845 4th Street North, St. Petersburg, FL 33701

  • CVS Pharmacy, 17817 SE 109th Avenue, Summerfield, FL 34491

  • CVS Pharmacy, 5670 N Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301

  • CVS Pharmacy, 10004 W. McNab Road, Tamarac, FL 33321

  • CVS Pharmacy, 6900 North University Drive, Tamarac, FL 33321

  • CVS Pharmacy, 2725 North MacDill Avenue, Tampa, FL 33607

  • CVS Pharmacy, 3102 West Gandy Boulevard, Tampa, FL 33611

  • CVS Pharmacy, 15499 North Dale Mabry, Tampa, FL 33618

  • CVS Pharmacy, 1820 Cheney Highway, Titusville, FL 32780

  • CVS Pharmacy, 6846 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach, FL 33411

A complete list of CVS Pharmacy drive-thru test sites can be found here.

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.

For downloadable COVID-19 testing media assets, including photos, video and interviews with CVS Health executives, please visit the Media 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.

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Tara Burke
646-765-4971
BurkeT1@aetna.com

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Multicultural products and services

Every day, millions of people shop in our stores, fill their prescriptions through our mail order pharmacy, or visit one of our MinuteClinics. These customers, clients and patients come from countless backgrounds and cultures, and have distinct and varied needs.

To best serve them, we offer a wide array of multicultural products online and in our CVS Pharmacy stores. We evaluate our multicultural products frequently and work hard to offer a variety of items that meet our customers’ needs.

Our most popular multicultural product lines include: Milani cosmetics, Gamesa cookies, Fabuloso household cleaners, Suavitel fabric softeners, La Costena grocery items and Ricitos de Oro baby care items.


Evolving to meet customer needs

As the nation’s demographics shift, we’re making sure our products and services evolve to meet the needs of our customers. We acquired Navarro Discount Pharmacy, a leading Miami chain with deep knowledge and experience serving the Hispanic market. We’re gaining insights about how Navarro merchandises products differently and learning about the services, products, value, and atmosphere that resonate with Hispanic customers, and we’ll be rolling out what we’ve learned to all CVS Pharmacy stores.

In addition, our retail website, CVS.com, is fully available in Spanish. We also feature multi-language signage in our retail stores and distribute prescription medication-related information in multiple languages.


Increasing access to health care

For more than a decade, our free Project Health screening events have been held in the largest multicultural communities we serve. Project Health offers free comprehensive health risk assessments, including blood pressure, Body Mass Index (BMI), glucose and total cholesterol screenings, as well as information about smoking cessation and health insurance options.

Project Health is part of our company’s effort to improve access to health care and ensure that cost is not a barrier to important preventive services.  

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

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Keeping connections in a distanced world to transform chronic care

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By Jonathan Mayhew, Executive Vice President, Chief Transformation Officer, CVS Health

Four months ago, chronic care was one of the nation’s biggest health challenges, affecting more than half of all American adults and driving 90 percent of health care spending according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Four months ago, new tools for helping people better manage and even prevent chronic conditions were expanding our ability to reach people early and often, connecting them with our local care teams, local community resources and virtual capabilities to support everyday decisions between regular doctors’ visits. Whether individuals chose to seek support at home, at work, in the pharmacy, online, or through a combination of all these options – these increased connections and intervention in chronic care would help prevent emergency room visits and hospital readmissions, improve health outcomes and lower costs.

Today, I still believe increased support and connections are key to fighting chronic disease, which is still a top health care challenge. But our world is different in many ways than it was four months ago. We are managing and looking to recover from a grueling pandemic, which has disproportionately impacted minority and underserved populations. Many people with chronic conditions have already delayed care due to fear of contracting COVID-19 in a health care setting.  In the months ahead, stopping in at your local pharmacy or visiting a doctor may not sound as appealing as it once did. For some, it will be non-starter.

At CVS Health, we understand that. Still, it is critical for those suffering or at risk of chronic conditions to continue regular care. And our approach to helping individuals with chronic conditions, which includes innovative touchpoints and groundbreaking data analysis, reflects the evolving needs of our customers, including a new reality shaped by the pandemic.

Combining physical, digital and virtual for more support options

Our past and real-time experience tells us that, particularly during stressful times, individuals at home need expanded options for accessing support for everyday decisions related to diet and exercise as well as medical and behavioral health care. While we will continue to expand our brick-and-mortar HealthHUB® locations to provide in-person health and wellness care, pharmacy services and retail goods, we also are accelerating and expanding our digital presence and integrating new virtual capabilities into our care management programs.

Recently, we have expanded the ways customers can engage with a CVS pharmacist, MinuteClinic® clinicians, or HealthHUB concierges (where available) to receive services. So, while an individual may not travel to see her pharmacist – she can still speak live over the phone or engage through an app and, afterward, have her medications delivered to her home. Additionally, through expanding telehealth capabilities, many individuals can access doctors to address medical and behavioral health concerns. No matter their preference, individuals have an array of options to stay connected.

Within our care management and condition management programs, we are making sure that, in addition to traditional telephone support, care managers can provide support using telehealth services and, when it is deemed safe to do so, still visit with individuals in their homes.  

Data is the game changer

Data will make these options even more effective. In the past, when the topic of data and analytics was raised related to care or condition management, it typically meant relying on claims data exclusively. Today, CVS Health is not only able to bring together a broader set of data from prescription claims and medical claims, but we also combine that data with lab results, electronic health record data and information from medical devices and wearables where permitted. As we’ve seen in Korea and multiple other countries, along with some efforts in the U.S. to track COVID-19, this approach provides a much more comprehensive understanding of what is happening with an individual and within a community. And because we are able to aggregate and analyze this data in real time, the insights we can generate for care managers, nurse practitioners, pharmacists and doctors (as part of referrals and ongoing care coordination) are actionable and make health care simpler for individuals. This kind of data fuels our Pharmacist Panel program which notifies our pharmacists of potential gaps in care or preventive care opportunities based on medical, pharmacy and lab data. This expanded view makes it even easier for pharmacists to proactively engage members in relevant, impactful and timely one-on-one conversations about how best to manage their chronic conditions. And this outreach is delivered through member-preferred channels like text, email or telephone.

Moving to a comprehensive approach to condition management

Unmatched data and multiple connection capabilities allow CVS Health to break away from the one-size-fits-all approach to chronic condition management. For example, most diabetes management programs today focus on just two modes of support -- monitoring blood glucose and managing issues of lifestyle and comorbidities – mostly through virtual reporting and telephone coaching.

Our comprehensive approach to diabetes care for Aetna members and CVS Caremark customers focuses on three additional areas for a total of five impact areas. In addition to monitoring blood glucose and managing lifestyle issues, we aim to ensure individuals also are receiving the recommended annual health screenings, adhering to medications and taking the right medications to manage their diabetes and any other conditions. Whether an individual is seen by a CVS pharmacist, a care manager, or MinuteClinic nurse practitioner online or in person, each will have an integrated view of the individual’s health needs in these five clinical impact areas. They will all be on the same page regarding medications, test results and care plans. This not only leads to more effective management of diabetes and other chronic conditions but also reduces the frustration patients often experience when care is disconnected and uncoordinated.

Taken together, improved interactions and data-fueled insights paint a picture of complete end-to-end condition management with many options for engagement and support. That is what is needed to improve our standard of care for diabetes and other chronic conditions. With integrated care teams, digital and virtual solutions and data technologies, we can stay connected to more people, on their terms and comfort levels, and help them to more successfully manage their chronic health conditions today and well into the future.

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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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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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During Nurses Month, we salute the vital work that nurses do every day

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This year, on the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth, National Nurses Month is celebrating the dedication of nurses in every interaction, every setting, every era, every day. Throughout May, CVS Health is also recognizing the thousands of nurses who work across our enterprise in this time of extraordinary challenge.

In honor of Nurses Month and in recognition of the vital work of nursing, CVS Health is making a $40,000 donation to Direct Relief to deliver protective gear and critical care medications to as many health care workers as possible.

Today, many nurses are found on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Others are contributing their expertise, experience and compassion behind the scenes. This includes some 10,000 nurses, nurse practitioners, LVNs and LPNs working for Aetna, MinuteClinic, CVS Caremark and Omnicare. All have been doing amazing work since COVID-19 began, including volunteering to oversee rapid testing in various areas or embracing new ways to treat patients during social distancing.

Sheryl Burke, Aetna Senior Vice President of Cross-Enterprise Strategic Innovation, recently praised nurses by saying, “You care for our customers and members like your own family through teaching, advocacy, listening and action. Your efforts have been nothing short of extraordinary and are well-deserving of our sincere gratitude.”

To learn more about the extraordinary work being done by our CVS Health nursing professionals, take a look at our Friday Pulse video recognizing Nurses Month. And please join us in celebrating nurses!

For more information about CVS Health’s efforts to improve care across the nation, visit our News & Insights page and the CVS Health Impact Dashboard. To stay informed about the latest updates and innovations from CVS Health, register for content alerts and our Leaders in Care newsletter.

A practitioner consults a female adult patient with a child via video call during a telemedicine visit.
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