Walmart is advancing its healthcare capabilities with the acquisition of telehealth provider MeMD.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The transaction will enable Walmart to provide telehealth services––including urgent, behavioral and primary care––nationwide.
Walmart already has a growing healthcare business, with its Walmart Health centers providing even more advanced care, such as X-ray, labs, diagnostics counseling, dental, optical and hearing services within its facilities. The company debuted Walmart Health with one center in Georgia and has since expanded with new centers in Florida and Arkansas.
The new telehealth offerings will complement Walmart’s in-person services, the retailer said.
“Telehealth offers a great opportunity to expand access and reach consumers where they are and complements our brick-and-mortar Walmart Health locations,” Cheryl Pegus, MD, executive vice president, Health & Wellness at Walmart, said in a statement. “Today people expect omnichannel access to care, and adding telehealth to our Walmart Health care strategies allows us to provide in-person and digital care across our multiple assets and solutions.”
MeMD was founded in 2010 by John Shufeldt, MD, and offers care 24/7 to millions of members. Its urgent care visits start at $67, while talk therapy treatments are listed at $85 per visit and psychiatry visits at $99.
“We’ve achieved incredible strides in making health care available to individuals and businesses around the country through our easy, affordable and intuitive online platform,” MeMD CEO Bill Goodwin, said in a statement. “We can’t imagine a better partner than Walmart as we are both committed to innovative healthcare delivery and bringing affordable, high-quality care to as many people as possible.”
The acquisition is also a defensive move against Amazon, which recently announced its Amazon One telehealth services. The e-commerce giant plans to first offer the telehealth service to its nearly one million employees this summer before broadening the service to the public later.
“Our Health & Wellness mission is to focus on the consumer’s seamless experience and improved health,” Pegus said. “We are excited to welcome MeMD employees to the Walmart family, and we are looking forward to together, accelerating health care access across the country.”