Three Texas cities will be homes to 29 Village Medical at Walgreens practices by the end of the year, Walgreens and VillageMD announced Thursday. The companies will open the co-located clinics at Walgreens stores in Houston, Austin and El Paso as they continue to push for 600 of the clinics over the next four years.
“This strategic partnership between Walgreens and VillageMD demonstrates our continuing commitment to the care and well-being of our patients, and we’re excited to expand our primary care and pharmacy service offerings in Texas,” said Jamie Vortherms, vice president of healthcare services at Walgreens. “With the opening of these Village Medical at Walgreens locations, we’re providing convenient access to personalized, high quality and coordinated care.”
The new Texas locations come as the companies push to accelerate the pace of clinic openings. Despite initially targeting 40 clinic openings by the end of the summer, Walgreens and VillageMD have opened 46 locations so far this year, executives said on the retailer’s recent third-quarter earnings call.
The push, particularly in Texas, is aimed at improving access to primary care, the companies said, noting that more than 825,000 patients 65 years old and older in the three cities will live within five miles of a new or planned Village Medical at Walgreens location.
“With Village Medical primary care services and Walgreens pharmacy services delivered through an integrated care model, we’re facilitating regular and direct communication with patients, helping deliver improved health outcomes and affordable care,” said Clive Fields, M.D., co-founder and chief medical officer, VillageMD. “We’re pleased to expand these offerings in Texas so residents can manage their chronic conditions and focus on being healthy, active members of their community.”
Walgreens noted that expanding health care access is particularly important for patients with chronic conditions — who comprise 6 in 10 Americans — who require multiple daily medications. In Texas, the company noted chronic diseases are the top three causes of death.
The locations with clinics also offer a coordinated care model, offering patients access to between-visit refills, medication substitutions and pharmacy consultations. As shared on the Q3 call, the companies also will offer these services digitally at nine Walgreens locations in Houston and Phoenix that do not have clinics.