The Detroit Medical Center has sold its retail and outpatient pharmacies to Walgreens Co. as part of a pharmacy reorganization.
The deal encompasses seven specialty pharmacy sites and one mail-order service business, Crain's has learned. Terms were not announced.
Over the past two years, DMC has been reorganizing its outpatient pharmacy operations, laying off and reassigning at least two dozen employees.
"I am pleased to share with you some important news that will enhance the services and convenience we provide to our patients and allow us to focus more resources on DMC's core mission of care delivery," DMC CEO Tony Tedeschi, M.D., said in a Wednesday email to employees.
"DMC has entered into an agreement with Walgreens, the world-class pharmacy operator, to transition DMC's retail, outpatient pharmacies into Walgreens-branded locations," said Tedeschi in his weekly email to employees. "This transition, which we expect to have in place and fully operational by August, is yet another example of DMC's transformation as we strengthen our focus on patient care and align our resources to support our care objectives."
In a statement, Walgreens confirmed it has purchased seven specialty pharmacies and one mail-service specialty pharmacy from DMC and its parent, Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare Corp.
Scott Goldberg, Walgreen's senior manager for media relations, said the transaction is scheduled to close sometime this summer. "We look forward to continuing to work with DMC's medical team as we focus on improved health outcomes through personalized support, patient engagement and expert care," he said.
Goldberg said Walgreens has approximately 300 community-based specialty pharmacy locations in the U.S., with about two-thirds located inside a hospital or medical office building. Walgreens is a unit of Deerfield, Ill.-based Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.
DMC officials have told previously told Crain's that outpatient pharmacy lost money and was not a core business for DMC.
"As you are aware, faced with broader industry challenges, hospitals nationwide must discover new, creative ways to improve patient care," Tedeschi said in the email. "Walgreens has successfully partnered with dozens of medical care providers to operate outpatient, retail pharmacies within hospital facilities. Walgreens is well known for its pharmacy expertise, high customer service standards and respected global reputation, and I am very confident that this transition will be successful and better serve our patients."
Walgreens will operate branded specialty pharmacy outlets at several of DMC's six hospitals. It also will coordinate with DMC's discharge planners to have prescriptions filled by DMC's in-house Walgreens.