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Hy-Vee expands clinic offerings, mobile tours

Hy-Vee is expanding the health clinic operations in its stores, both in terms of the size of the clinics and the number of clinics it offers.

“It’s been a good model for us, and it’s growing,” said Aaron Wiese, vice president of HealthMarkets and health and wellness strategy at Hy-Vee.

The company currently hosts 70 such clinics in its stores — all operated by local healthcare providers — and its goal is to have 100 by the middle of 2019, Wiese said. The company is incorporating clinics into most of its new stores, and carving out space in older stores for clinics as they are remodeled.

Hy-Vee also takes its clinics on the road. Since launching its Hy-Vee Healthy You Mobile program in 2013, the company has converted nine Winnebago RVs into mobile clinics, each with two exam rooms offering biometric screenings, flu vaccinations, nutritional information, cooking demonstrations, food samplings and other services. The mobile units, staffed with Hy-Vee dietitians and pharmacists, travel to health fairs, festivals, school events and other community gatherings.

“It’s a diagnostic mobile clinic on wheels,” Wiese said. “It’s been a great asset for us.”
This year, Hy-Vee focused on bringing the Hy-Vee Healthy You Mobile clinics to more underserved areas, and tying them back to the stores thematically. In February, for example, the Hy-Vee Healthy You Mobile clinics conducted a heart health tour throughout the retailer’s eight-state region, offering free biometric screenings to consumers who might not otherwise have had access to such services. The mobile clinics distributed samples of heart healthy products and coupons to use in-store, where it featured displays of related products.

“Our CPG partners helped fund the screenings, enabling our customers to get a free screening and improve their awareness of heart health and heart healthy foods,” Wiese said.
Hy-Vee also did a similar tour focused on men’s health in June and a diabetes-themed tour is scheduled for November.

In total, Hy-Vee is doubling the number of events and screenings this year via its Hy-Vee Healthy You Mobiles, compared with a year ago.

“We operate in some very rural markets, and in a lot of our markets, Hy-Vee is one of the only places where people are going to find these services,” Wiese said.
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