“The company’s move was yet another sign of its metamorphosis into becoming more of a health care provider than a largely retail business, with its stores offering more miniclinics and health advice to aid customers visiting its pharmacies,” according to the New York Times.
And the National Journal wrote, “The move, which some might see as long overdue at a one-stop shop that doubles as a convenience store and pharmacy, could be a savvy publicity coup that builds brand loyalty with certain demographics.”
I know I’m pretty excited that it’s a Rhode Island company willing to take a $2 billion (less than 2 percent of annual revenue) annual hit so that its business model better matches its values.
So is Congressman Jim Langevin, who sent this statement:
CVS has long been a good corporate citizen and a pillar of the Rhode Island community, and this decision to change their business practice in the interest of public health is yet another example of CVS’s leadership. I believe they are blazing the trail for other companies to put profits aside and join the movement to help decrease tobacco use nationwide and improve public health. I am proud that this bold move is coming from a Rhode Island-based company, and I know that health care providers here are well-equipped with cessation and counseling programs to help CVS customers and all Rhode Islanders quit smoking and get on the path to a healthier life.
Providence Mayor Angel Taveras said:
I am proud that the Rhode Island-based CVS has taken a leading role to end the sale of tobacco in pharmacies. Pharmacies are trusted sources of health information for consumers, and the choice to stop selling tobacco products demonstrates CVS’ commitment to the wellbeing of its customers.
And Governor Chafee said:
This must have been a difficult decision for the corporation and the board to weigh the benefits of making the conscientious choice versus the possibility of jeopardizing the bottom line. I applaud CVS/Caremark for taking the right fork in the road.