Retail

Walmart Health Clinics Appeal To Those Who Have Not Seen a Doctor Recently

Image Credit: Mike Mozart

Getting an annual exam, blood work, or a prescription for something simple like a sinus infection can now be combined with a shopping trip to Walmart to pick up milk. With smaller clinics in Georgia, Texas, and South Carolina already up and running, the chain opened its first full Walmart Health Center location on Friday in Georgia. Offering mental health, dental, and optometry services on top of primary care, Walmart is clearly pushing forward with its in-store clinics.

And while the idea of going to Walmart to get tested for strep throat is obviously a new notion, a full 11% of Americans 18+ already say they’d “likely” visit a Walmart clinic.

Unsurprisingly, Americans who already like Walmart are more on board with the idea of going to a health clinic at the store. However, a remarkably robust 5% of Americans who hold an unfavorable view of the chain say they’d still be likely to go to a Walmart in-store health clinic.

Another notch in Walmart’s health clinic belt is that 17% of Americans who say they “very closely” follow trends in health and fitness are likely to see what Walmart has to offer by way of health services. 

Walmart’s health services might also prove to be a hit with people who normally don’t go to the doctor, with Americans who say they didn’t go to the doctor once in the last year 62% more likely to try Walmart’s clinics than Americans who visited a doctor’s office at least one time.

Here’s an interesting takeaway: Having someone you think of as your personal doctor or health care provider has no bearing on whether you would be likely to try Walmart’s clinics. With the health care system in what seems like constant upheaval, the days of having a “doctor for life” may be a thing of the past.

Another victory for Walmart here is age. While the numbers aren’t astounding, they are clear: The younger someone is, the more likely they say they are likely to go to Walmart’s health clinics.

Another surprising tidbit: 12% of city-dwellers — not normally Walmart’s bread-and-butter customer — claim to want to visit a Walmart clinic.

Lastly, household income seems to certainly play a role, as Americans with household incomes under $50,000 a year are 33% more likely to go to Walmart for their health needs than those Americans making $100,000 or more.

Walmart’s foray into the health care market seems to be the right decision at the right time. Despite only being available in three states as of this writing, nearly one in nine Americans are already willing to give Walmart a try when it comes to their health. That number will surely rise as Walmart rolls out more clinics and centers in the coming months and years.

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