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Here’s what CVS’s $69 billion Aetna acquisition could mean for health-care subscribers


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Photo: Stocksy/Mosuno

CVS just announced plans to buy health-care provider Aetna for $69 billion—and if antitrust regulators approve the merger, it wouldn’t just be the biggest health-insurance deal…ever, it could also change the health-care industry as the world knows it.

A major drugstore chain like CVS joining forces with one of the largest health insurers would help the two companies compete with other providers, and that could be both good and bad for customers. According to the The New York Times, it could mean the 46.7 million people who use Aetna insurance could be limited as to where they can fill their prescriptions (CVS would obviously be the top choice). But, the partnership could also open the door to cheaper and more accessible medical care for many.

CVS execs said the merger could transform the pharmacy’s 10,000 locations into community-based sites that would have nurses, pharmacists, and other medical professionals ready to not only give advice on certain conditions, but also allow customers to undergo tests and lab work at a lesser cost.

During the announcement of the merger, CVS execs said it could transform the pharmacy’s 10,000 locations into community-based sites that would have nurses, pharmacists, and other medical professionals ready to not only give advice on certain conditions, but also allow customers to undergo tests and lab work at a lesser cost.

“We think of it as creating a new front door to health-care in America,” said Larry J. Merlo, CVS Health’s chief executive officer. “We know we can make health-care more affordable.”

There’s still a chance the merger could be blocked, but if it does get approved, you can expect some pretty big changes to come, whether you’re a CVS or Aetna customer or not.

Here’s how the modern apothecary might replace your drugstore habit. Also, check out the oil-pulling products that are now at drugstores.