Walgreen is handing over operations of its 56 in-store health clinics in the Chicago area to Advocate Health Care, the largest hospital network in the state.
It's the second time Walgreens Boots Alliance has offloaded some of its clinics to a health system. In August, the Deerfield-based drugstore chain announced it had reached an agreement to turn over 25 clinics in Washington and Oregon to Providence Health & Services of Reston, Wash.
“Going forward we envision our clinic portfolio to be a hybrid” of self-managed and outsourced locations,” Dr. Pat Carroll, chief medical officer of Walgreens' retail clinics, said in an interview.
The Chicago-area clinics employ about 110 nurse practitioners and will continue to operate in much the same manner when Advocate takes over, Carroll said. Walgreens employees can apply to continue to work in the clinics, Dr. Lee Sacks, Advocate chief medical officer and executive vice president, said in a separate interview.
Neither company would disclose financial details of the partnership or how long it will last, but Advocate confirmed it is leasing the in-store space from Walgreens.
Advocate will take over Walgreens' clinics in eight counties, with plans to add a few more, including on the Southeast Side of Chicago, Sacks said. The clinics will be branded as Advocate Clinic at Walgreens in May. Advocate is installing its billing and electronic medical records systems in the clinics so doctors and patients are connected across the health system.