Wal-Mart's Low-Cost Drug Plan In Virginia

By: Lindsay Puccio
By: Lindsay Puccio

October 26, 2006

Wal-Mart is expanding a program offering $4 prescriptions for some generic drugs to more states, including Virginia.

The program covers prescriptions for everything from allergies to high blood pressure. The amount of savings Wal-Mart promises is significant.

Getting the medications you need to keep you healthy can cost a pretty penny, which is one reason why Wal-Mart said it is expanding its generic drug program to more states, including Virginia. It will offer over 300 generic drugs for only $4 a prescription.

"This will put money back into the pockets of our customers so they do not have to choose between paying their light bill and getting groceries or getting medication," said Mark Shelton, a Wal-Mart executive.

That is exactly what customers want to hear. "I've just glanced at the list and I see that on three of my prescriptions I will save money. I'm sure if I look at it more closely I may see a savings of even more. I take at least five prescriptions a month for diabetes," said Kathleen Tempesta.

It will certainly help with low income families who can't afford insurance at all and are forced to pay full price for the prescriptions they need.

"Some of my prescriptions I had to cut out because I can't even afford to buy them, so I'll be able to get those, which is wonderful," said Patricia Trunzo.

While it may be wonderful for the customer, critics say for the local pharmacies, like Timberlake on the Charlottesville Downtown Mall, they can't compete with these prices.

The new program kicks off on Thursday. You can pick up a list of all the medications Wal-Mart's drug program covers at a Wal-Mart store near you.

The company started the low-cost program in Florida just two weeks ago and the response has been overwhelming. Officials said that prompted the expansion into other states.


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