Walmart to close 51 clinics as it shuts down entire Walmart Health division

Walmart will close all 51 of its doctor-staffed health clinics as part of an announcement that its Walmart Health project is ending.

The clinics, located in Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, and Texas, had only been open for a few years. Walmart also announced Tuesday that it is discontinuing its virtual care option.

Walmart pharmacy and vision clinics will be unaffected.

Patients with scheduled appointments will continue to be seen, and Walmart will make attempts to refer patients to high-quality providers in their insurance networks to ensure they continue to receive care, according to CNBC.

Walmart to close 51 clinics as it shuts down entire Walmart Health division

The announcement represents a quick reversal for the retail powerhouse. Walmart announced last month that it hoped to increase the number of doctor-staffed clinics to 70 by the end of this year.

However, due to escalating expenses and competition, the corporation judged that the attempt was not financially viable.

“Through our experience managing Walmart Health centers and Walmart Health Virtual Care, we determined there is not a sustainable business model for us to continue,” the company stated in a release Tuesday.

Nontraditional providers have had difficulty providing health care services.

Last month, Walgreens announced the closure of 140 VillageMD primary care clinics, with plans to close an additional 20. A high-profile joint health venture involving Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase failed some years ago, but Amazon continues to invest in One Medical, which it purchased last year and now has over 125 locations.

Approximately half of the Walmart Health clinics were in Florida, and last October, Walmart announced a partnership with Orlando Health, a private, not-for-profit network of community and specialty hospitals. That effort is also tapering down, according to CNBC.

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