What's the big deal with Walgreens?

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05/06/2009
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We posted a story to this Web site yesterday about Air Products selling the bulk of its home infusion business, as well as some of its respiratory and HME business, to OptionCare, a subsidiary of Walgreens. A provider quickly e-mailed me about the news: "Greeting cards and oxygen—love it!"

The Shootist move

I tend to agree, but despite all this talk about Walgreens and other big-box stores like Walmart tip-toeing or diving into HME, I've never seen any of these stores have anything other than basic equipment like canes and commodes.

First Snow movies

So I asked the provider: "Is there a Walgreens in your area?" His response: "A few, but they don't appear to be doing home care, beyond the standard dusty pile at the back of aisle 8."

Where are these Walgreens locations that offer HME like respiratory therapy? Do they exist? Or are independent providers so fearful that Walgreens is planning to do more than dabble in the industry that just seeing the giant mentioned in the same sentence as HME causes sheer panic?

Adaptation. video Liz Beaulieu

Comments

Option Care does exist, they operate just like an HME. I do not know or have not seen their location, but it is not inside a Walgreens. They must be operating at another location. We have dealt with Option Care for a few patients that have relocated to our service area and yes you don't see the HME operating from the store front itself. But Option Care operates from somewhere.