Support for Patients with Chronic Diseases

  • Focus: Chronic Disease Management

    Managing a chronic disease can be frustrating and challenging. Patients must regularly seek health services to monitor their condition, keep track of and adhere to often-complex regimes of medications, and be aware of potential related issues or side effects. We offer patients the support they need through expanded services at our MinuteClinic locations and other support services.

  • Expanding MinuteClinic Services

    MinuteClinic offers a suite of health and wellness services designed to help patients manage and improve their chronic conditions, including screenings and monitoring for diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Coordinated care is important for chronic diseases and MinuteClinic shares visit summaries with patients' primary care providers, often using EpicCare, the most widely used electronic health record platform.

    We collaborated with affiliated health networks to launch treatment services for high blood pressure at almost 200 MinuteClinic locations in 2015. Our nurse practitioners are able to diagnose, provide initial guidance, and refer patients to their primary care physician. For patients without a primary care provider, we provide them with a list of physicians in their local area, including our affiliated health systems. Early in 2016, we began offering initial prescriptions for high blood pressure medication following diagnosis.

  • Supporting Patients Through Pharmacy Advisor®

    Our pharmacists play a vital role in ensuring high-quality patient care by taking an individualized approach to each patient, particularly those managing chronic diseases. One way they do this is through Pharmacy Advisor®, an initiative designed for CVS Caremark’s more than 75 million Pharmacy Benefit Management (PBM) plan members. Pharmacists counsel patients through face-to-face conversations or by phone, helping them with all aspects of pharmacy health — from how to take medications properly, to the importance of adhering to prescribed dosages and schedules, to advice on effective drug alternatives that can help reduce medication costs. The goal is to keep patients on their prescribed medications and if necessary, intervene to prevent complications. In addition to improving medication adherence, our pharmacists are able to direct patients with certain chronic conditions to existing disease management programs for additional support.

  • Helping Patients Manage Specialty Medications

    The growth in specialty medications used to treat many complex health conditions is giving patients unprecedented access to potentially life-changing treatments. But these medications tend to be expensive, increasing costs to payors and patients.

    CVS Specialty offers a suite of pharmacy services designed to better meet the needs of patients who are prescribed specialized drug therapies for complex and sometimes rare health conditions. Patients are supported by a care team of pharmacists and nurses who are equipped to address their needs and handle concerns associated with their medications. We also help patients coordinate their insurance benefits and provide tips on how to get the most from their insurance coverage.

    To address the unique challenges patients may encounter when they are prescribed a specialty medication, we created a prescription services program called Specialty Connect™. Specialty Connect allows patients to bring their prescriptions to any CVS Pharmacy, receive the expert care they need, and get access to the medication they have been prescribed. In fact, Specialty Connect has demonstrated an 11.4% increase in adherence rates among patients prescribed these complex medications.

    We also continue to integrate Coram, the specialty infusion services company we acquired in 2014. Coram has nearly 90 locations across the United States, including seven different infusion suites located inside a CVS Pharmacy. Coram provides a range of infusion therapies, from parenteral nutrition and enteral nutrition (tube feeding) to pain and palliative care services, among others. Patients also receive individual counseling, education, and skilled nursing services for in-home infusion care. Coram is fully accredited by The Joint Commission.

  • Focus: Healthier Product Offerings

    CVS Health continues to expand the offerings of better-for-you foods and other categories of "healthier" products. The move is aligned with our purpose and CSR goals and responds to consumer demand. It also reinforces the company’s position as a health care company that is focused on the well-being of consumers and providing healthy options.

  • Expanding Healthy Food and Snack Options

    In 2015, we expanded our Gold Emblem Abound™ product line from the 40-plus wholesome choices introduced in 2014, to more than 100 items, including new beverage and grocery selections. The vision behind this product line is to provide consumers with healthier options when they are looking to purchase healthier snacks or grocery items. Gold Emblem Abound products are free from artificial flavors and preservatives, with 0 grams of trans fat. In addition, each has at least one better-for-you characteristic that is called out on the package.

    The growth of the Gold Emblem Abound line is both a measure of our commitment to the health of our customers and of our customers’ keen interest in having healthier grab-and-go food choices. In 2016, we plan to add an additional 40 items to the line.

    We also extended our Fit Choices selections in 2015 with two new Fit Choices tags: Good Source of Protein and Non-GMO Project Verified. These additions supplement our portfolio of Heart Healthy, Gluten Free, Sugar Free and Organic options. The Fit Choices program features nearly 350 selections, including a number of items from our Gold Emblem Abound brand.

    In addition to our Fit Choices initiative, we are making better-for-you selections easier to find in stores. We focused on 450 select stores in 2015, moving our healthy snack options to the store’s high-traffic entrance aisle and shifting high-sugar options, such as bagged candy and sweetened cereal choices, further back in the store. We also added high-visibility, open-air refrigeration units stocked with fresh produce, yogurt, premium juices, and quick, healthy meal options. Our healthier food offerings in these locations also feature an expanded selection of non-toxic household products. In 2016, we plan to make similar changes to another 450 stores.

    Also in 2016, an additional 2,800 stores will be modified to give healthy snacks more visibility and prominence, particularly in the front-of-store check-out area.

Learn about our other strategic priorities within our Health in Action pillar:

Accessible Affordable Health Care

Patient and Customer Well-Being and Safety

Read the full report:

2015 CSR Report