Not a MinuteClinic: UnitedHealthcare Medicare Part D CEO outlines Walgreens centers

A Las Vegas Walgreens will be the first to house one of 14 UnitedHealthcare Medicare service centers set to open this year.

The center's grand opening is scheduled for Feb. 4, with a house call already booked for the first day the center opens, Mike Anderson, CEO of the Medicare Part D business at UnitedHealthcare, told Becker's. The remaining 13 locations will open through the end of May, with two other sites coming to Las Vegas before the centers begin opening their doors in Phoenix, Cleveland, Denver and Memphis, Tenn.

"We have a vision for [the] services that we're going to be delivering, and we think we have a lot of good intelligence to suggest that these are unmet needs that our consumers are seeking to have met locally," Mr. Anderson said.

He said that vision, first announced Nov. 25, 2019, is three-pronged: to increase beneficiaries' understanding of Medicare, to deliver clinical services and to educate consumers on Medicare plan options. For the clinical services, Mr. Anderson said a nurse practitioner will be on site at the centers certain days of the week for scheduled appointments with UnitedHealthcare Medicare beneficiaries. The appointments may include health assessments, health screenings and services to address identified care gaps.

But this won't be a CVS Health-esque MinuteClinic, he said.

"Unlike what you see with other pharmacy settings, like a MinuteClinic, this won't be available just for walk-in sort of services. It will be more structured, and it will be services that we're scheduling with members of our Medicare Part D plan for very specific purposes," Mr. Anderson said.  

He added that the centers will focus more on chronic disease management than acute care needs.

"We expect to learn a lot this year, in close collaboration with Walgreens … and refine the model going forward," Mr. Anderson said.

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