CVS Health, Others Make News at J.P. Morgan Health Care Conference

37th Annual J.P. Morgan Health Conference bannerCVS Health is rapidly incorporating Aetna into its business and will open the first in a series of concept stores in February in the Houston market to test its consumer-centric retail engagement model that can target Aetna’s members. Renton, Wash.-based Providence St. Joseph Health unveiled a second $150 million health care venture fund. And health care providers shared cost-cutting strategies as they try to improve the affordability of health care.

These were just three of the headlines from the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference last week in San Francisco.

A FierceHealthcare report notes that Larry Merlo, CVS Health CEO, said the concept stores are part of a suite of ideas the company has to transform health care. Others include expanding services at CVS MinuteClinics to include health screenings and in-store blood testing and a pilot program to allow Aetna case managers to schedule follow-up visits within 14 days of a patient’s discharge from the hospital if they are unable to see a primary care provider.

In another conference session, Aaron Martin, Providence St. Joseph’s chief digital innovation officer and Providence Ventures’ managing general partner, said his organization’s second venture fund will likely include 15 investments over the next five years, with up to $10 million going to each company, according to Modern Healthcare. Martin, a former Amazon executive, said his group chooses its portfolio companies by identifying challenges within Providence St. Joseph Health and then finding “best-of-breed” companies that offer solutions.

In another move, the Civica Rx generic drug company joint venture unveiled 12 new health system members during the conference. For more on some of the strategic takeaways from the meeting, read this report from Becker’s Hospital Review.

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