WSJ.com is reporting that Wal-Mart is offering businesses low-priced drugs if they sign up to buy directly from Wal-Mart's network of in-store pharmacies, rather than contracting to buy drugs through third parties known as pharmacy-benefit managers. This will heat up competition for other Pharmacies and Retailers by increasing footfall to Wal-Mart stores. And you all know what happens when you visit a store like Wal-Mart, you tend to buy lot more than what you go in for.
Apparently the Pilot companies have already seen benefit from buying directly from Wal-Mart.
Wal-Mart began a trial of its program in September with heavy-equipment maker Caterpillar Co., which provides prescription coverage for 70,000 employees and their dependents. Wal-Mart negotiated a fixed markup over its cost for the drugs it sells to Caterpillar's employees under the heavy-equipment maker's in-house insurance. Though Wal-Mart doesn't reveal the costs to Caterpillar, they are verified by a third party. The markup guarantees a profit for Wal-Mart, while reducing the cost to Caterpillar.Todd Bisping, who manages Caterpillar's drug-benefits program, said the company was able to reduce its drug costs enough that it waived copayments on generic prescriptions bought from Wal-Mart.