What happens when a giant chain of drugstores closes?
An investigation by Vice News found that some of the largest drugstores in America have been closing their doors for months or years and that their demise is likely to have massive repercussions for the lives of millions of Americans.
In December, a group of local health officials released a list of more than 2,000 stores, many of which have closed for several years, as part of a new nationwide investigation of drugstore closings.
This list includes some of America’s biggest chains, including Walmart, Rite Aid, Walgreens, CVS, and CVS Wholesale.
According to the list, which has not been released publicly, more than 300 drugstores are closing each month.
Many of the stores that are closing have long been struggling financially.
In 2016, the median household income in California was $60,000, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Many have faced bankruptcy.
“It’s really sad to see them all go,” said one longtime shopper who requested anonymity to avoid retribution.
“I’ve been shopping at them for years, and now I can’t.
I can never go back.”
Walmart’s parent company, Wal-Mart Stores Inc., is not listed on the list.
But the chain has announced it will reopen its first store in San Diego this summer, a location that was shuttered in 2016.
“I think Wal-mart is just a victim of their own success,” said Michael Smith, executive director of the San Diego-based Coalition for Affordable Health Care, a nonprofit advocacy group.
“People have gotten sicker, health insurance premiums have gone up, and they’ve been forced to close.”
At the end of December, the Coalition for Healthcare Security released a report that found that over 30% of the health insurance that people have received over the past decade has been subsidized by their employer, with the average employer paying an average of $2,097 per year.
According for the coalition, this is a record-breaking sum for a year.
“That’s a lot of money that has been thrown away,” said Smith.
“A lot of people are feeling the pinch.”
The coalition’s list of stores also includes stores that have closed in the past several years including Walgers, Cabela’s, RiteAid, WalMart, Target, and BJ’s Wholesales.
“They’re all struggling,” said a shopper.
“There’s nothing I can do to save them.”
Another shopper, who asked to remain anonymous, said he felt as if he had lost his job.
“We were so excited to get out of Wal-Marts and buy the new drugs,” he said.
“But they’re closing, and there’s no way to get our money back.”
“I don’t think anyone will ever know what they’re going through, except for the people who live in the area,” said another shopper of the chain that has closed for months.
“The last thing I want is for them to feel bad for us, but I’m not sure we have any choice.”
According to the coalition’s analysis, the closure of these large chains will lead to an average loss of $7,878 in spending over the course of a year for people in states where Walgarts and Cabelas are the largest chains.
The coalition says the losses are due in part to higher prices and fewer choices.
In states where a pharmacy is a smaller chain, the loss in spending will be even greater.
“It’s a really sad day when you’ve got the largest pharmacy chain in the country closing its doors and the health care system’s already on the verge of collapse,” said Mike DeMoro, a former president of the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, which represents more than 200,000 employees in California’s health care industry.
“This will cause a lot more people to lose their jobs and lose their benefits, and the economy will suffer.
The fact is that we need more options for seniors.”
In California, the largest chain of all is CVS Health, which also has several chains.
“These are the same people that are going to be working at these stores, so it’s a complete surprise,” said DeMora.
“And when you see them on TV and in commercials, it’s just really upsetting.”
In a statement, Citing a need to preserve the viability of our health care delivery system, the chain said that the closures are part of an effort to provide additional health care choices.
“As a result, our employees will have a greater choice in their care at their local pharmacy and will have greater access to our pharmacy network, our patient care teams, and our clinical services,” the statement said.
A spokesperson for Walgars said that it is cooperating with the coalition to provide information on the closings of these chains.
But he added that Walgares was committed to providing the highest quality and