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BENTONVILLE, Ark. - Just two weeks after rolling out a low-cost program on certain generic drugs in its Florida stores, Wal-Mart, Inc. here is expanding the program to 14 more states based on customer demand.
Wal-Mart said yesterday that prescriptions for 143 generic drugs for up to 30 days will be available for $4 in Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas, and Vermont.
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One of Wal-Mart's biggest competitors, Minneapolis-based Target, said it will match the discount in all the same states except Alaska and Vermont, where it does not have stores.
However, at least one retailer responded that it will not change its drug prices. Walgreen, the nation's largest drugstore chain issued a statement that said, "Wal-Mart's limited price promotion is in response to the increasing number of seniors choosing Walgreens for their pharmacy needs. Therefore, Walgreens will not match Wal-Mart's promotion."
Kmart, which is part of Sears Holding (SHLD), said it would continue a program it launched in May, whereby customers can fill 184 generic prescriptions in all its 1,100 pharmacies nationwide for $15 for a 90-day supply.
Wal-Mart said it will continue to expand into other states "as quickly as possible", although regulatory and legal hurdles could come into play.
Wal-Mart's $4 generics program includes 314 generic prescriptions available for up to a 30-day supply at commonly prescribed dosages. The list of 314 generic prescriptions is made up of as many as 143 compounds in 24 therapeutic categories. Wal-Mart estimates that the list of $4 prescription medications represents nearly 25 percent of prescriptions that it currently dispenses in its pharmacies nationwide.