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CVS doctors up digital pharmacy to drive mobile prescription refills

CVS is opening the doors to its mobile pharmacy, featuring a variety of tools giving customers the ability to manage their health while on-the-go, which the retailer hopes will decrease healthcare costs as well as encourage prescription refills.

The pharmacy chain is looking to continue its place as an innovator in healthcare and drive sales for returning prescription customers through the launch of numerous tools designed to manage personal health. CVS is incorporating Apple Watch integration, script scanning, messages and digital insurance cards into its digital properties to streamline its pharmacy experience through mobile devices.

“At CVS Health, everything we do is aimed helping people on their path to better health,” said Brian Tilzer, chief digital officer of CVS Health. “Mobile is now a huge part of people’s lives, and we want to empower our customers to manage their health wherever they are.

“We are investing significantly in our digital strategy to integrate pharmacy, front store experience and health tools and services with the goal of giving customers a connected health experience when, where and how they want them,” he said.

Mobile tools
The retailer’s new suite of tools is hoping to not only make healthcare simpler for customers, but also reduce costs. CVS streamlined the refill process through Apple Watch incorporation, in which users can order prescriptions as well as check on their status and information.

The Apple Watch features will continue to be available on its mobile app for smartphones and tablets. The CVS app will also now include an option to scan a paper script through camera features on mobile so that users can start the process immediately, an attempt to reduce the amount of unfulfilled prescriptions.

CVS customers can also scan a photo of their insurance card via smartphones or at-home scanners to include in their personal accounts on the pharmacy’s digital properties. This will allow users and CVS access to their insurance information at any time, anywhere, removing hassle for both the customer and employee.

Mobile app users can also keep better track of their medication intake through the MedRemind function, reminding consumers when it is time to take their pills and notifying them when they have missed one. The pharmacy chain has heavily integrated with beacon technology, and is making use of it with a message system that sends push notifications to users who have opted in regarding whether or not their prescriptions are ready.

Pharmacy competition
The pharmacy chain is competing with Walgreens, another pioneer in the mobile health sector, which recently rolled out its revamped app with a more user-friendly layout, text alert options for prescription pick-up and a streamlined experience in the ExtraCare rewards section, proving that pharmacies must offer in-store features on mobile to retain customer loyalty (see more).

Walgreens also brought its suite of telehealth services to mobile users in 20 new states as part of a significant expansion, in addition to rolling out the loyalty-boosted Walgreens Connect app for measuring glucose and blood pressure levels (see more).

“The goal for CVS Digital is to focus on extending and enhancing what we provide in our physical retail stores, where 5 million customers shop on a daily basis, and executing an omnichannel digital strategy that carries across all of our business goals,” Mr. Tilzer said. “CVS Health is working to lead our customers on a path to better health by reinventing pharmacy and providing the most accessible and personalized expertise, in stores and across all digital platforms.”

Final take
Brielle Jaekel is editorial assistant at Mobile Commerce Daily