CVS Health Executive: ‘Underestimate Amazon at One’s Peril’

CVS Health Executive: ‘Underestimate Amazon at One’s Peril’

October 18, 2021 Off By administrator

The retail giants are getting — either indirectly or directly — into home-based care.

That matters, because if they didn’t firmly believe in it, they wouldn’t be paying any mind to it at all.

“We’re a $270 billion company. … You have to pick what you’re going to spend your time on,” Alan Lotvin, the executive vice president of CVS Health, said at the HLTH conference Sunday. “To quote Steve Jobs, ‘The hardest part of what I do is trying to figure out what not to do,’ because all of these things are super interesting, exciting and fun. It’s just hard to say what’s going to move the needle enough.”

If one uses deductive reasoning, then, it’s clear that CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) cares a whole lot about home-based care.

The aforementioned response was prompted by a question about successful digital health companies such as Ro, GoodRX, Hims and others, and why CVS Health hadn’t started similar lines of business itself.

While the American health care company has not yet found the time or resources to create those sorts of platforms, it has with home-based care innovation.

After all, the behemoth has allotted plenty of resources toward home- and community-based care over the last couple of years, creating what it considers “a home health hub” of sorts.

“Our transformation over the last decade has enabled us to become the nation’s leading diversified health services company,” Karen Lynch, the president and CEO of CVS Health, said on the company’s 2020 Q4 earnings call. “Our presence in communities across the country allows us to meet consumers where they are and become a bigger part of their everyday health.”

Last April, CVS Health partnered with UCLA Health to enhance its in-home capabilities related to home infusion services. Then, early on in 2021, it partnered with the Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) to offer in-home chemotherapy to cancer patients.

It’s not done, either. In fact, partnering with home-based care agencies themselves has even been something the company has recently considered, Adam Pellegrini, the SVP of enterprise virtual care and consumer health at CVS Health, told HHCN in February.

“We’re open to all those types of discussions, for sure,” Pellegrini said. “Right now, we’re just really getting user feedback, looking at all the different ways that we can work with our partners. The idea here is to keep seniors safe in the home. … I think COVID has accelerated some of our original thinking.”

In July, Business Insider reported that CVS Health had turned down Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN). Specifically, CVS had told Amazon it would not pay for Amazon Care, Amazon’s own at-home and virtual care service.

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That could have meant a lot of things. It could just be that Amazon — which does not move slowly — had not yet built up enough capabilities or resources to warrant payment from CVS Health…

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