Meijer Inc.'s free prenatal vitamin program has filled its 1 millionth prescription, at a cost savings of nearly $14 million to Midwest families.

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Meijer fills 1 millionth free prenatal vitamin Rx

June 29th, 2011

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Meijer Inc.'s free prenatal vitamin program has filled its 1 millionth prescription, at a cost savings of nearly $14 million to Midwest families.

The supercenter chain said Wednesday that Meijer pharmacies hit the million mark earlier this week. Under the program, launched in May 2008, any customer — regardless of insurance or co-pay — can have a prenatal vitamin prescription filled at no charge.

Hank Meijer, CEO of Meijer Inc.

Meijer's free program includes some well-known prenatal vitamin brands, including TriAdvance, Trinatal GT, Trinatal Ultra, Vol-Nate, Vol-Plus and Vol-Tab. According to the retailer, it has been shown that prenatal vitamins play a key role in healthy pregnancies and infancts, and many health professionals think they also play a pivotal role for women in the months leading up to conception.

"Meijer has always been a strong advocate for safe and healthy families, and we're very proud to offer a program that works to ensure the health of an expectant mother and her child," co-chairman and chief executive officer Hank Meijer said in a statement. "In addition, offering free prenatal vitamins helps Midwest families cope with rising health care costs, complementing the many other ways families can save money throughout our stores."

Before the prenatal vitamin initiative, Meijer launched a program in October 2006 offering select antibiotics free. The continuing program covers leading oral generic antibiotics, with a focus on the prescriptions most often filled for children. And last year the retailer introduced another program providing no-cost prescriptions for metformin, the most commonly prescribed drug for type 2 diabetes.

Meijer reported that the free antibiotics program has filled more than 7 million prescriptions, saving families almost $120 million, and the free metformin program has helped nearly 500,000 people battle diabetes, at a cost savings of more than $4 million.

"In less than five years, our free antibiotics, prenatal and diabetes prescription programs have saved our customers nearly $140 million," Meijer stated. "In total, we have helped hundreds of thousands of people throughout the Midwest receive free prescriptions to help them, and their families, lead healthier lives."

Meijer operates 196 supercenters in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.