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CVS/pharmacy reaches out to Hispanics

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MIAMI — Responding to one of the largest and most rapidly growing demographics in the United States, CVS/pharmacy has launched a “new shopping experience” aimed at the Hispanic community.

CVS:pharmacy y mas storefront

Twelve CVS/pharmacy y mas stores have been opened thus far.

The pharmacy chain has opened 12 CVS/pharmacy y mas (“and more”) stores in Miami. The CVS/pharmacy y mas stores — 11 remodeled CVS stores and one new construction — will all feature bilingual staffs, 1,500 new Hispanic products, more competitive pricing and new services that are unique to a national retail pharmacy.

CVS/pharmacy president Helena Foulkes said catering to Hispanic customers is part of the company’s strategy of being more flexible to its consumer base. “With more than 7,800 stores across the U.S., we understand that our retail pharmacies should not be one-size-fits-all for the diverse communities we serve.” According to statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanics account for more than half of the nation’s total population growth.

The y mas stores, however, do not represent the chain’s first attempt at reaching out to the Hispanic community. Last year, CVS acquired Miami-based Navarro Discount Pharmacy, which at the time was the largest Hispanic-owned drug chain in the country.

“We have leveraged the expertise and experience of Navarro’s successful history of serving Hispanic consumers to create CVS/pharmacy y mas,” Foulkes said. “CVS/pharmacy y mas stores are designed to be a place where our Hispanic customers feel at home to receive our best-in-class pharmacy service, along with personalized products and services to better meet their diverse needs.”

Gabriel Navarro, chief of Hispanic consumer growth at CVS/pharmacy, said the name of the new pharmacies — “y mas” — signifies the availability of more products and services that are important and tailored to the Hispanic consumer with “warmer and more personal customer service.”

Along with having Spanish speaking staff and Spanish signage throughout the stores, featured products will include favorite Hispanic brands such as Cafe la Llave, Agustin Reyes, Fabuloso, Suavitel, Creolina and Formula 88.

The stores will also sell appliances popular with Hispanics such as coffee and espresso machines, pressure cookers, rice cookers, and arepa makers. Customers shopping at the y mas stores will also be able to purchase designer fragrances from the Navarro fragrance counter for much less than at department stores and will be able to find further savings and competitive pricing on products throughout the store.

Customers will also benefit from a digital service center inside the stores featuring an authorized dealer and payment center for MetroPCS — no contract and prepaid cellular service — as well as a bill payment center for utilities and money transfers to a variety of ­countries.

The y mas pharmacies also plan to offer an “OTC Health Solutions Center” to allow customers to pick up over-the-counter products that are covered under their health insurance plans. The pharmacies will also serve “cafecito,” or Cafe Cubano, a popular espresso beverage that originated in Cuba.

But along with adapting the stores to accommodate its Hispanic customers, the company said the y mas locations will continue to offer CVS/pharmacy’s clinical services and medication adherence programs, which are designed to improve the health of customers while reducing overall health care costs as well as innovative online and mobile tools to help patients manage their prescriptions. As at all other CVS pharmacies, y mas customers will be able to participate in the CVS/pharmacy ExtraCare Program, which CVS says is the nation’s largest rewards programs.

CVS held a ribbon-cutting ceremony at one of the y mas stores earlier this month and donated $10,000 to a local child care services center.


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