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The Chicago Sun Times reports that Walgreen has opened a new store in the city’s West Loop - the rare store that it operates without a pharmacy.

According to the story, “A sign in front of the store asks customers if they ‘Need a pharmacy?’ and directs them to the nearby Walgreens at Halsted and Monroe streets.

“For a global network of drugstores that got its start on the South Side more than a century ago, the store represents a major shift from its other 120 stores in the city and from most of the nearly 10,000 other stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Prescription drugs and other pharmaceutical services made up nearly 70 percent of sales at stores in the U.S., according to its 2017 annual report. Worldwide, the company filled more than 1 billion monthly prescriptions last year.”

However, one expert says that this may be a harbinger:

“Simon Pickard, a professor of pharmacy systems, outcomes and policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago, said he believes the new Walgreens might be representative of where the industry is going. With dwindling payments from public and private insurers and competition from online companies like Amazon, the chain needs to look for other ways to stay profitable. Retail pharmacies can be more expensive to maintain.”
KC's View:
Tough times when economics require drug stores to cut back on the drugs they sell.