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CVS opens store in Katrina-ravaged section of New Orleans

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NEW ORLEANS — CVS Pharmacy has opened a new store in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans, which the company said makes it the first major retailer to build in the neighborhood since Hurricane Katrina.

CVS New Orleans opening_Lower Ninth Ward

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu (center, left) shakes hands with CVS’ Roger Francis at the Lower Ninth Ward store’s grand opening.

CVS said Thursday that the store stands as a building block in the revitalization of the Lower Ninth Ward, one of the communities hit hardest by the devastating storm in 2005.

The new CVS Pharmacy covers more than 13,000 square feet and features a full-service pharmacy with a drive-through window plus a wide range of over-the-counter health, beauty and personal care products, as well as healthy snack options.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, CVS officials and associates, and community leaders participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday at the new store, which located at 5000 North Claiborne Ave.

“CVS Pharmacy is extremely proud to now be a part of this community, giving residents convenient access to best-in-class pharmacy services and high quality health, beauty and wellness products,” Roger Francis, area vice president of CVS Pharmacy, said at the grand opening event. “More than 10 years ago, CVS Pharmacy was on the front lines of aiding in the relief and recovery efforts when Katrina struck, and now we are proud to be on the front lines helping to revitalize this community.”

Twenty new jobs have been added in the community as staff at the new store, CVS reported. According to Landrieu, his administration has committed more than $500 million in recovery projects in the Lower Ninth Ward, including major road and infrastructure developments, along with new police and fire stations and a community center.

“Today’s celebration marks another milestone in the renewal and redevelopment of the historic Lower Ninth Ward,” Landrieu told attendees. “This new CVS Pharmacy marks the first national retailer to come to the Lower Ninth Ward since Hurricane Katrina, bringing important services and resources to this underserved area. This is a major sign of the progress we’re making in restoring the Lower Ninth Ward and rebuilding New Orleans not how she was, but how she always should have been.”

After Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005, CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation donated more than $1 million in cash donations and supplies to the American Red Cross and other nonprofit organizations to aid relief efforts.

CVS Health noted that today it’s continuing to assist in the community’s relief and recovery effort. That includes a $15,000 grant from CVS Health to be donated to the Baptist Community Health Services to support the local nonprofit organization’s chronic disease management program. BCHS and its physicians provide primary medical care for youth and adults in the Lower Ninth Ward.

“As a provider of primary and behavioral health care in the Ninth Ward, we understand the strategic significance that CVS Pharmacy’s investment has on our community,” commented Shawn Powers, chief executive officer of Baptist Community Health Services. “Because of CVS’ donation and commitment to the Ninth Ward, our community will have improved access to health care, prescriptions and related services. Lives improve when companies like CVS invest in our neighborhood.”


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