Kicking off our commitment to address racial inequality

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Since announcing the company’s commitment to invest nearly $600 million over five years to address racial inequality, CVS Health has been focused on ways to further advance employee, community and public policy initiatives that address inequality faced by the Black community and other disenfranchised communities.

Because studies have shown that your zip code can have as much impact on your health as your genetic code, CVS Health is focusing on social determinants of health in Black and at-risk communities. Increasing access to housing and health care to assure all Americans, especially to those that are more at-risk, is imperative to improve health outcomes.

Most recently, the company kicked-off of this commitment with a $13.7 million investment to help renovate 230 low-income housing units at the Rosewind apartments in Columbus, Ohio. These funds will also be used to make significant improvements to the local community center and support new community programs in the area.

This investment builds on the company’s longstanding commitment to diversity, including social determinants of health, with a particular emphasis on increasing access to affordable housing, which is inextricably linked to health. Access to health care, housing and healthy food can significantly impact rates of chronic disease and other health outcomes, with average life spans varying by up to 20-30 years in communities that are just a few miles apart.

Within the Rosewind complex in the South Linden neighborhood of Columbus, 95% of residents are Black and have an average annual household income of less than $17,000.  Average life expectancy in South Linden is just under 70 years – more than seven years shorter than the average in all of Franklin County, which includes Columbus and certain neighboring communities. And there are 25.7 infant deaths per 1,000 live births in South Linden compared to the 8.5 infant deaths per 1,000 live births in Franklin County.

The renovations, as well as new community programming funded by CVS Health, will provide comprehensive local support to residents, including the following new on-site programs Health and Wellness programming, on-site health screenings and COVID-19 testing, an educational cooking series, community programs and maternal programs.

In addition, CVS Health will also establish a new program at Rosewind as part of its ongoing workforce initiatives to provide employment services and training to the community. These workforce development programs will focus on incorporating empowerment programs and build local partnerships that will help community members achieve meaningful employment opportunities.

Since 1997, CVS Health and Aetna, a CVS Health company, have invested more than $1 billion in affordable housing and community initiatives. In 2019, the company invested $67 million in affordable housing across the country, and the company plans to exceed that amount over the next five years to help address housing insecurities and promote community health improvement. Investments in affordable housing, as well as collaborations with community groups in these areas, help provide support to those who need it most.

Brick apartment building in the Rosewind community in Columbus, Ohio.
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Meeting the nutritional needs of a Midwestern community

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Harvesters The Community Food Network has served 26 counties in northwestern Missouri and northeastern Kansas for over 40 years by providing food and household products to more than 760 local partners, including food pantries, shelters, and community kitchens. As the impact of COVID-19 began to ripple across the country, they knew they were going to face unprecedented and unpredictable needs. As food donations decreased, food costs increased, and volunteers sheltered at home, they prepared to take action to ensure they continued to reach their community. Support from organizations like CVS Health, who provided a $20,000 grant to support their food distribution efforts, would prove critical.

As the pandemic set in, their nonprofit partners reported need increasing by 30 to 40 percent. In March and April, they distributed over 8.7 million pounds of food — an increase of 2.2 million pounds from the same time last year. And with supply chain challenges and reduced community donations, they found the cost to provide meals increased 300 percent. In response to these needs, Harvesters increased their distributions, including more mobile distributions, such as two “mega mobile” distributions that served over 16,000 people. And support from organizations like CVS Health filled the gap in food need: our donation provided 20,000 meals.

Within the community, their response has been welcomed. “It’s just been helpful having a variety of nutritious food and a clean and safe place to pick it up… I’m usually on the other side — giving,” said one client. “They’re so respectful here. They help you maintain your dignity.” We’re proud to support Harvesters and the quick response that allowed them to help this client, and thousands of others like her, get the food they needed throughout a difficult time.

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Providing access to food in Boston

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While the City of Boston has created food access points to help address food insecurity caused by COVID-19, for many in the city, limited mobility or lack of transportation means that these resources are still out of reach. Boston Medical Center recognized that for their most medically fragile patients, alternatives would be necessary to ensure they received nutritious food appropriate for their specific dietary needs. With support from CVS Health, they developed a COVID-19 Emergency Social Services Fund to help support this vulnerable population.

One family helped by this program were connected with the fund after both parents were admitted to Boston Medical Center for inpatient COVID-19 care, leaving their oldest son, just a teenager, to take care of his younger siblings as they quarantined at home. Unable to leave the house, they were in dire need of food. A volunteer was able to work quickly with food pantry staff to pack a box of food for delivery and bring it to the family’s home. Since the volunteer couldn’t hand the box directly to the family, to ensure they received it safely, she instead left it on their doorstep and waited in her car while they collected it.

Funding from CVS Health allowed Boston Medical Center to provide no-cost meals to over 2,000 low-income individuals, many of whom are hourly wage earners without paid sick leave or who are unable to work due to the pandemic. All told, the program has distributed 17,000 meals so far, providing support and security to families in need.

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Helping local students thrive

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As COVID-19 closed schools across the country, parents and educators were forced to figure out how to transition students to remote learning. While teachers adjusted syllabi and schools invested in education software, a more basic need quickly became apparent in households across the country: not every student that needed a computer with internet access had one.

In our hometown of Woonsocket, Rhode Island, CVS Health was prepared to help. When the Rhode Island Foundation issued a challenge to businesses and individuals in the state to support the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE), we responded with a $150,000 donation to provide 750 Chromebook laptops to students in grades three through five.

This donation helped to close the technology gap for Woonsocket students by providing pre-k through grade 12 students in the district the technology they needed to succeed at remote learning.

“Seeing Rhode Islanders come together to generously support our students and our teachers is inspiring. By focusing on the tools that make Distance Learning possible for every student, we are making equitable learning opportunities possible during this public health crisis,” said Rhode Island Foundation President and CEO Neil D. Steinberg.

“CVS Health has been an incredible partner in our state’s response to this pandemic, and I am so appreciative of their support of Woonsocket students,” said Angélica Infante-Green, RI Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education. “Access to technology can make all the difference between making school happen and preventing students from all participation. This donation will have an incredible impact to close the tech gap and help Woonsocket students make the most of their distance learning experience.”

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CVS Health celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act passing and its longstanding culture of inclusion

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A graphic containing stylized text reading: We're IN for inclusion! We scored "100" on the 2020 Disability Equality Index (DEI).

Before the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, was passed in 1990, people with disabilities faced challenges in employment, transportation and other areas critical to their everyday lives. The ADA was enacted to prohibit discrimination based on disability across the United States. This month, CVS Health celebrates the 30th anniversary of ADA, and the company’s abiding work to create opportunities for meaningful employment for people with disabilities.

Fostering a culture of inclusion is a critical priority for CVS Health. The company has invested in its Workforce Initiatives and its highly successful Abilities in Abundance program, which breaks down the employment barriers people with disabilities face every day.

Over the last two decades, more than 55 Abilities in Abundance programs nationwide have helped thousands of people with disabilities find meaningful employment opportunities within CVS pharmacies and other CVS Health locations. In collaboration with the National Consortium of State-Operated Comprehensive Rehabilitation Centers, schools and non-profits, individuals with disabilities have the opportunity to work closely with trained staff to gain experience in customer service, in-store and pharmacy technician positions. Through the program, each participant receives classroom and hands-on training in mock pharmacies, which provides a holistic view of daily responsibilities.

Inclusion is deeply rooted in CVS Health’s purpose of helping people on their path to better health and continues to permeate the company’s innovation strategy. Recently, CVS Health launched Spoken Rx™, a new feature of the CVS Pharmacy app that can read a specific type of label for patients with visual impairments and those who cannot read standard print labels. Spoken Rx is the first in-app prescription reader application to be developed by a national retail pharmacy.

Additionally, 2020 was the fourth consecutive year that CVS Health earned a top score of 100 on the Disability Equality Index (DEI). The DEI, which launched in 2015 as a joint initiative between Diversity:IN and the American Association of People with Disabilities, is recognized as the most extensive disability inclusion assessment tool designed and embraced by both business leaders and disability advocates.

David Casey, Vice President, Workforce Strategies & Chief Diversity Officer at CVS Health, had the opportunity to speak at this year’s Annual Disability:IN Conference to underscore CVS Health’s inclusive workplace culture and the comprehensive work the company does to support and recruit individuals with disabilities.

“I believe our diversified workforce is the cornerstone of our business, and for CVS Health to thrive, we need different worldviews, races and ethnicities, backgrounds, abilities and ages,” said Casey. “As we move forward into the next decade of our Abilities in Abundance program and beyond, we’re continually looking at other ways to break down employment barriers that individuals with disabilities continue to face.” 

A graphic containing stylized text reading: We're IN for inclusion! We scored "100" on the 2020 Disability Equality Index (DEI).
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CVS Health recognized as one of the ‘50 most community-minded companies’ by Points of Light

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CVS Health has been named a 2020 honoree of The Civic 50 by Points of Light, one of the world’s largest organizations dedicated to volunteer service. This marks the fourth consecutive year that CVS Health has been named to The Civic 50.

The award recognizes CVS Health as one of the 50 most community-minded companies in the United States. The Civic 50 provides a national standard for superior corporate citizenship and showcases how companies can use their time, skills and resources to impact their communities.

The Civic 50 honorees are public and private companies with U.S. operations and revenues of $1 billion or more, and are selected based on four dimensions of their U.S. community engagement program, including investment, integration, institutionalization and impact.

“Our positive impacts are possible because of the tremendous work of our CVS Health colleagues,” said Eileen Howard Boone, Senior Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility & Philanthropy and Chief Sustainability Officer for CVS Health. “Our colleagues are living our purpose every day by giving back their time to improve the health of our communities.” 

In 2019, CVS Health employees donated more than $12 million worth of volunteer time. From team service projects to serving on boards as mentors and company hosted volunteer activities, employees participated in thousands of volunteer events representing CVS Health in their local communities.

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CVS Health launches ‘Transform Health 2030’ corporate social responsibility strategy with its 13th annual CSR report

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WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) today launched its 13th annual corporate social responsibility (CSR) report and unveiled Transform Health 2030, the company’s new CSR roadmap for the next decade. The report lays the groundwork for how the company will transform health in four priority areas: Healthy People, Healthy Business, Healthy Community and Healthy Planet. It outlines the ways CVS Health is simplifying the health care system, supporting the personal and professional development of colleagues, investing in community health at the local level and setting bold goals to reduce environmental impact.

“Our corporate social responsibility strategy, Transform Health 2030, reflects our commitment to bringing transformative change to health care access and delivery, while meeting and exceeding the needs of our patients, members, customers, clients, colleagues, supply chain and environment,” said Eileen Howard Boone, Senior Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility & Philanthropy and Chief Sustainability Officer for CVS Health.

This year’s report is the first that includes data of the newly combined enterprise following CVS Health’s combination with Aetna. The Transform Health 2030 roadmap was developed based on outcomes of the company’s comprehensive materiality assessment, conducted in 2019.

Each pillar of the Transform Health 2030 strategy leverages the assets, scale and expertise of CVS Health to create impact. These pillars and associated accomplishments covered in the 2019 CSR report include:

Healthy Peopledelivering on CVS Health’s purpose of helping people on their path to better health across all its touchpoints:

  • Launched more than 50 HealthHUB® locations by the end of 2019, offering a variety of services to help improve health outcomes and transform the consumer health experience at the local level, including managing chronic conditions, supporting nutritional health and providing community wellness spaces.

  • MinuteClinic became the first retail healthcare organization to receive the Pathways to Excellence designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

  • Expanded CarePass nationally, bringing simplified value to our customers while making it easier for them to care for themselves and their loved ones.

Healthy Businessfostering a business that creates value for CVS Health’s colleagues, shareholders, partners and supply chain:

  • Generated $5.6 billion in economic impact and created 35,000 jobs for minority and women-owned businesses through a best-in-class supplier diversity program.

  • Released Commitment to Responsible Marketing Practices, which demonstrates the company’s beliefs and aligns to its business strategy. The Commitment is brought to life through the CVS Beauty Mark, a watermark that signifies imagery advertising beauty and personal care products has not been digitally altered.

Healthy Communitydelivering significant social impact to support the health of communities across the U.S. and improve health outcomes in the communities CVS Health serves:

  • Helped address social determinants of health by delivering $6.4 million in free health care services to 70,000 participants through Project Health in 2019 and investing a total of $50 million in affordable housing.

  • Announced a new, three-year $10 million collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association to provide care and support services for patients, families and caregivers while advancing research toward prevention and a cure.

  • Continued to invest in building the first tobacco-free generation, with CVS Health and the CVS Health and Aetna Foundations awarding more than $16 million in grants to organizations that provide tobacco-free programming for youth, educators and clinicians.

Healthy Planetrecognizing that the health of the environment is inextricably linked to human health, CVS Health is committed to doing its part as a health care leader:

  • Earned a place on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI World) for the first time and named to DJSI North America for the seventh time, recognizing CVS Health’s sustainability leadership. The company was also recognized by the global environmental non-profit CDP, earning a place on the CDP A List and recognition as a CDP Supplier Engagement Leader.

  • Removed oxybenzone and octinoxate from all store brand sunscreens in advance of laws banning these chemicals in Hawaii and Key West, Fla.

  • Removed BPS from CVS Pharmacy customer receipts to increase their recyclability, while enrolling 1.1 million customers in digital receipts in 2019 for a savings of 48 million yards of receipt paper.

CVS Health’s 2019 CSR report was developed in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Sustainability Reporting Standards, a global framework widely used by organizations to report on CSR and sustainability performance, and is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The report is available online at cvshealth.com/social-responsibility.

About CVS Health

CVS Health employees are united around a common goal of becoming the most consumer-centric health company in the world. We’re evolving based on changing consumer needs and meeting people where they are, whether that’s in the community at one of our nearly 10,000 local touchpoints, in the home, or in the palm of their hand. Our newest offerings — from HealthHUB® locations that are redefining what a pharmacy can be, to innovative programs that help manage chronic conditions — are designed to create a higher-quality, simpler and more affordable experience. Learn more about how we’re transforming health at www.cvshealth.com.

Media contact

Erin Britt
401-770-9237
erin.britt@cvshealth.com

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Developing our diverse workforce

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Creating opportunities for youth

With some of the best talent in the industry, we have a unique opportunity to expose youth to a vast number of careers in health care. Our STEM enriched, nationally recognized program, myCVS Journey Pathways to Health Care Careers, introduces students to career opportunities in pharmacy services; professional management; medicine and nursing; and IT, analytics and engineering.

In 2018, more than 2,800 youth participated in the program, nearly half of whom engaged in the pharmacy track. We extended the program’s reach through a new collaboration with Job Corps, the largest free residential education and job training program for young adults that reaches more than 60,000 students per year.

Investing in job training

To strengthen our workforce and address our nation’s widening skills gap, we train highly capable individuals for meaningful careers in pharmacy care, prescription benefit management, and retail store management. In 2005, we became the first employer to launch a U.S. Department of Labor Registered Apprenticeship program for pharmacy technicians. By 2022, we plan to hire 8,000 registered apprentices and provide these new colleagues with classroom and online instruction, professional mentorship, and on-the-job training, as well as pre- and postplacement retention support. At the end of 2018, we had hired more than 3,200 colleagues through this program.

We continue to identify ways to reach more prospective apprentices, and our newest program in Maryland – the state’s first for pharmacy technicians and pharmacy managers – provides structured training through our Regional Learning Centers (RLC) in Washington, D.C., and District Heights, MD.

Once apprentices complete the training, they are eligible to apply for a position at one of our more than 220 retail locations in the state.

Our RLCs serve as a hub for job training and a pipeline for new talent. Through our four, fully operational store and pharmacy training locations in Boston, Cleveland, New York City and Washington, D.C., we support the development of colleagues and partner with community agencies through a range of workforce development programs. Each RLC houses classrooms, office space and a full mock pharmacy.

In 2018, 1,400 community members participated in an RLC workforce development program, with many transitioning to positions within CVS Health. Retention rates among CVS Health colleagues who participate in an RLC program are 35 percent higher than for colleagues who have not. Current colleagues also receive training at the RLCs, with more than 11,000 people having participated in 2018.

Welcoming individuals of all abilities

We believe in breaking down employment barriers for individuals of all abilities. Since 2015, we’ve hired nearly 7,000 colleagues with disabilities, who bring valuable and diverse life experiences to their roles with CVS Health.

In 2018, we expanded on this commitment and opened seven mock pharmacies at rehabilitation centers around the country through a partnership with the National Consortium of State-Operated Comprehensive Rehabilitation Centers (NCSOCRC). Mock pharmacies provide opportunities for students that are training for roles as certified pharmacy technicians and retail sales associates to practice what they are learning in the classroom before entering the workforce. At the end of 2018, CVS Health had more than 43 of these training centers around the country, with 29 geared toward individuals with disabilities.

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Supporting Our Patients with Chronic Disease

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As we transform the health care experience for all patients, we pay special attention to the needs of patients with chronic diseases who seek care more frequently. We continue to invest in the development of smart and robust solutions to address the health impacts and escalating costs related to chronic disease in the U.S. Our efforts include expanding preventive care and treatment for chronic conditions, improving medication adherence, coordinating care across the healthcare system, engaging patients where they are, and offering healthier product options at our stores.

Personalizing Care Solutions

Our Transform Care programs continue to deliver frequent and highly personalized care to millions of CVS Caremark members who are managing a chronic condition. The programs combine patient-related health and pharmacy data with drug cost management strategies that make care more effective, affordable and easy to navigate.

Transform Diabetes Care, introduced in 2016, has since been adopted by more than 230 CVS Caremark clients, representing 3.4 million members. The program uses advanced analytics to identify members with diabetes and target appropriate interventions. A certified coach develops and helps execute personalized management plans for Type 2 diabetes patients based on their pharmacy data and electronic health record information. The patients use at-home, connected glucometers for glucose readings, which their coach can monitor to offer help as needed. The program also ensures patients receive prescription refill reminders, in-person counseling on diabetes management, and comprehensive diabetes visits at MinuteClinic locations at no out-of-pocket cost.

By 2021, we plan to offer an enhanced diabetes program that combines CVS Health’s local and pharmacy care with Aetna’s care management, targeting, analytics and other capabilities, resulting in a best-in-class diabetes and chronic offering. The enhanced program will derive from the current Transform Diabetes Care model, making for a seamless transition and member experience for clients who wish to adopt the enhanced product. Features of the enhanced product may include:

Aetna’s care managers can provide a single point of contact for members with chronic conditions regardless of which conditions members have. The member’s care manager will also have access to the member’s information from their engagement in the Transform Diabetes Care program and can coach based off of that information.

Creating Comprehensive Programs for Complex Conditions

Another way we are reducing costs and enhancing patient care is through the development of comprehensive programming designed specifically for complex chronic conditions like kidney disease and cancer.

In 2018, we introduced a program to support patients with End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), a disease that affects nearly 700,000 Americans. Taking a staged approach, our program seeks to slow the progression of ESRD and reduce associated hospitalizations. Beginning with early disease identification and patient education, the program will follow with the development of a comprehensive home dialysis program, for both hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Understanding that longer, more frequent hemodialysis treatments often lead to better outcomes, we will initiate a pivotal clinical trial of a new home hemodialysis device in support of a planned U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) submission to obtain market clearance.

We will select new program participants by determining who is most at risk for kidney disease and progression to kidney failure, as identified through medical and pharmacy claims data and predictive analytics algorithms, in accordance with HIPAA. Our Accordant Care nurses will engage these individuals to educate them on their risk level, important tests they should consider taking, and the need to see a nephrologist. This team will work with individuals as they progress toward ESRD.

We also work with our health care partners and clients to help manage the cost of oncology care while ensuring access to vital therapies for patients. Our approach promotes evidence-based cancer care, lower-cost but clinically equivalent treatment options, and a holistic patient care model that helps patients adhere to therapy. An important component of our cancer care approach is helping providers stay up-to-date with the latest research and advancements, a challenge in the fast-paced field of oncology.

In 2018, we partnered with the leading oncology organization National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) to provide physicians with a tool to access the latest evidence-supported information. Treatment Guidelines from the NCCN are integrated into Novologix, CVS Health’s proprietary technology platform, and serve as the clinical foundation of multi-drug regimen prior authorization (PA) for physicians and patients. Novologix helps drive cost-effective regimen selection by determining treatment coverage that meets treatment plan needs.

To learn about the many other ways we’re supporting our chronic disease patients, read our 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Report.

To stay up-to-date on the latest CVS Health Social Responsibility news and content, sign up for email news alerts.

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Reducing Our Water Consumption and Waste

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We continue to implement new technologies and operational practices to minimize our environmental footprint and contribute to healthier, more sustainable communities. With more than 9,900 retail locations, 22 distribution centers, numerous field offices, and a fleet of 2,500 delivery vehicles, we aim to drive efficiency across all aspects of our business – reducing our carbon footprint, energy usage, water consumption and waste.

Improving Our Water Efficiency

Access to water is critical to the health of our communities. Though our operational water use is not intensive, we use an enterprise-wide water management strategy to provide each site with tailored guidance to reduce consumption.

In 2018, our water usage per square foot of retail space decreased by 3 percent, and our total water use increased by 4 percent from 2017 due to an increase in our store footprint. Through water efficiency measures, total water use per square foot has decreased 31 percent from the 2010 baseline.

For new construction in retail operations, we set a target to reduce water use by 20 percent by 2020. We achieved this goal in our standard prototype stores by the efficient use of irrigation systems and the management of drought resistant plantings. We continue to implement these best practices and evaluate opportunities with our landscape plans.

Minimizing Our Waste and Increasing Recycling

In 2018, we diverted 55 percent of our waste to recycling, with 86 percent of the solid waste generated at our distribution centers diverted for recycling.

In September of 2018, we launched a first-of-its-kind program to address a new California law that prohibits retailers from sending organic waste to landfill. With support from a third-party partner, we developed an innovative solution for managing excess food products in our stores to prevent them from becoming waste. Inventory scanning technology in our stores identifies excess, seasonal or nearly expired food and directs CVS Pharmacy colleagues to place the items in a designated tote which is transported back to our distribution centers and then to third-party facilities. There, inedible organic waste is processed to create renewable energy and organic fertilizer, while quality organics are donated to local charities and food banks – a win for the planet and community health.

In the first four months of this program pilot, we donated more than 650,000 units of organic products and recycled more than 230,000 units. The program is now live in all retail stores in California and the value of the product donated in 2018 is estimated to be $2.1 million.

These efforts build on previously identified waste minimization strategies, such as optimizing the number of SKUs available for sale and modifying the timing of restocking shelves to lessen product expirations in the targeted category by 25 percent.

In 2017, we completed the implementation of a container optimization program for our regulated waste program in our retail stores. From 2017 to 2018, we realized a reduction of over seven tons of cardboard and achieved considerable cost savings.

To learn more about the ways we’re working to protect our planet, read our 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Report.

To stay up-to-date on the latest CVS Health Social Responsibility news and content, sign up for email news alerts.

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