Walmart eyes imaging, primary care expansion with new health centers

Walmart continues to expand its healthcare footprint, announcing on Wednesday plans to bring its low-cost services to Florida. 

The retail pioneer said it will initially focus on building Walmart Health locations in the Jacksonville area, offering many of the same services as its existing locations and future spots in Illinois. Those include x-ray and diagnostic imaging, labs, full-service primary and urgent care, dental and other healthcare services.

Last month, Walmart opened two new health clinics: one in Loganville, Georgia, and another in Springdale, Arkansas. The latter is the first in the state and is operating as a new prototype with a smaller footprint and alternative care options.

The company opened its pilot health clinic last September in Georgia, offering primary care services up to 50% lower than typical pricing. Walmart Health also promotes more transparent pricing, regardless of insurance status. It also recently partnered with a health analytics company to bring high-quality imaging care to employees under its insurance plan.

Walmart said it expects to have locations in the sunshine state next year, and noted that Florida has the second-highest number of its retail stores in the U.S.

Senior VP of Walmart U.S. Health and Wellness Sean Slovenski said the pandemic has made the need for affordable healthcare even more obvious.

“The combined crises of the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic recession and subsequent loss of health insurance for millions of Americans have reinforced the vulnerabilities of our healthcare system,” he said in a July 22 announcement. “At Walmart, we understand that this means our customers need us now, more than ever. We don’t take this responsibility lightly and are committed to helping our customers save money while living better–and healthier.”