Symmes Township, Ohio – The CVS Pharmacy at Loveland Madeira and Kemper Road is permanently closing on December 5.

CVS, the largest US chain of pharmacies, closed 244 stores between 2018 and 2020. In 2021, it announced plans to close 900 stores by 2024.

The Ohio Capital Journal reported in September, “The news comes after inspectors have found that CVS’s understaffed stores in Ohio have in some instances lacked controls to protect patients. And it raises the prospect that after buying up independent and small-chain competitors, cost-cutting large chains might not be able to adequately protect patients — when they can provide service at all.”

Ohio Capital Journal reporter Marty Shadlen said, “CVS bought and closed numerous smaller competitors and moved their prescriptions to its stores. Now it’s been closing its own stores and moving those scripts into its remaining stores, seemingly without adding staff to accommodate the new patients.”

In at least some cases, the problem isn’t that the companies owning big chains are losing money, it’s that they’re not making enough to keep Wall Street happy. For example, CVS Health made almost $2 billion in profit in the second quarter of this year, but that was 37% less than a year earlier, CNBC reported. But the corporation owns not only the biggest pharmacy retailer. It also owns Aetna, a top-ten health insurer, and CVS Caremark, the nation’s largest drug middleman. And not all of the slump was due to pharmacy operations.

In the CVS’s second-quarter earnings call, CEO Karen Lynch said, “We grew (pharmacy) revenue to $28.8 billion, an increase of nearly 8% versus the prior year. We generated $1.4 billion of adjusted operating income in the quarter, a decrease of 17% from the prior year, largely due to lower COVID-related volumes.”

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