CVS Caremark Corp. has opened the first of seven planned MinuteClinics inside Longs Drug Stores in Hawaii.

MinuteClinic, Hawaii, CVS Caremark, Longs Drug Stores, Moiliili, Honolulu, Nancy Gagliano, walk-in medical clinic, retail health clinic, Hawaii State Senate, Donna Mercado Kim, Della Au Belatti, Hawaii House of Representatives, County of Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell, HMSA, Hawaii's Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Michael Stollar

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MinuteClinic makes Hawaii debut at Longs Drugs

September 27th, 2013

WOONSOCKET, R.I. – CVS Caremark Corp. has opened the first of seven planned MinuteClinics inside Longs Drug Stores in Hawaii.

MinuteClinic Nurse Practitioner Tara Davis checks the blood pressure of Hawaii State Senate President Donna Mercado Kim.

CVS said late Thursday that the walk-in medical clinic, located in the Moiliili neighborhood of Honolulu, is the first of seven MinuteClinics slated to open on the island of Oahu over the next two weeks. The other six clinics will serve patients in Aiea, Hawaii Kai, Kailua, Kaneohe, Kapolei and Waialae.

At the grand opening for the Moiliili clinic, MinuteClinic nurse practitioners checked the blood pressure of Hawaii State Senate President Donna Mercado Kim and administered a flu shot to Hawaii House of Representatives Health Committee Chair Della Au Belatti. County of Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell also attended the event, which included a traditional maile lei untying and blessing ceremony.

CVS acquired Longs Drug Stores in 2008. Hawaii's Longs locations are an important milestone in MinuteClinic's national expansion plan to open 150 clinics nationwide this year, according to Nancy Gagliano, MinuteClinic's chief medical officer.

"We are thrilled to bring MinuteClinic to Hawaii, our first new state in five years and the first of three new states in 2013," Gagliano said in a statement. "We believe MinuteClinic can be part of the solution to help broaden access to high-quality, convenient and affordable health care services on Oahu."

CVS Caremark said it's the exclusive provider of pharmacy benefit management (PBM) services to HMSA, Hawaii's Blue Cross Blue Shield Association licensee. Since the relationship between CVS Caremark and HMSA began in January, HMSA has pushed to bring MinuteClinic to Hawaii, CVS added.

Della Au Belatti, who chairs the health committee of the Hawaii House of Representatives, gets a flu shot from MinuteClinic nurse practitioner Melissa Fletcher at the opening of the new clinic in Moiliili.

"The opening of MinuteClinic locations in Hawaii is another concrete example of the commitment CVS Caremark has to both our membership and the community at large," stated Michael Stollar, senior vice president for integrated health development at HMSA. "We are excited to welcome MinuteClinic to the islands and believe their convenient services such as vaccinations, screenings and monitoring of chronic conditions such as diabetes can help support primary care providers in Hawaii in their mission to keep their patients healthy."

According to Gagliano, MinuteClinic aims to help patients find a medical home and can play a complementary role as part of a medical home team. "About 50% of our visits occur on evenings, weekends and holidays, when patients may not be able to get an appointment with their primary care provider," she explained. "And about half of the patients we see do not have a physician, due in large part to the severe shortage of primary care doctors in the U.S. We expect the same patterns in Hawaii."

Patients who visit MinuteClinic without a primary care doctor are provided a list of physicians in the area who are accepting new patients, Gagliano added.

Overall, MinuteClinic has more than 700 retail health clinics in 26 states and the District of Columbia.

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