Dollar General Takes Another Step to Expand Its Health Care Offerings

Dollar General Takes Another Step to Expand Its Health Care Offerings. A Dollar General shopping basket on the floor of a Dollar General store aisle with a stethoscope next to it.

For the second time in less than two years, the huge retail chain Dollar General (DG) is expanding its health care focus. It plans to pilot mobile clinics at three of its Tennessee stores in a partnership with DocGo, a provider of mobile medical services in 26 states and in the United Kingdom.

As initiatives go, this may seem like a small move. The clinics that are hosted in large vans in store parking lots provide basic, preventive, urgent care and chronic condition-management services along with lab testing. The DocGo pilot may expand to other DG stores depending on customer feedback.

Albert Wu, M.D., DG’s chief medical officer, said in a statement that the mobile clinics are part of the discount chain’s strategy to bring more affordable health and wellness services to its customers, particularly in rural areas, while establishing the company as a trusted partner in providing health services. DocGo On-Demand at-home urgent care provides services including annual physicals, acute illness and urgent and wound care visits, vaccinations and diagnostics like EKGs.

The mobile clinics, which will accept Medicare, Medicaid and select insurance plans, will serve as a front door to meet the needs of patients in rural areas, who often face challenges when trying to access convenient, close-to-home care. It’s similar to the approach the retailer took in July 2021 when it launched its DG Wellbeing brand and to that taken by CVS Health with its HealthHUB locations. At the time, Wu said DG planned to establish itself as a “health care destination.”

In that initiative, DG expanded its retail space for health care products and services by about 30% and offered 400 more items compared with standard stores. DG Wellbeing is now available in about 3,200 of DG’s more than 18,000 stores.

The question going forward is: How significantly will DG expand its on-site care delivery offerings?

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