CVS Is Getting Rid of This in Stores, as of Aug. 12

·3 min read

CVS is one of the biggest names in healthcare, providing customers in the U.S. with one convenient place to pick up prescriptions, get vaccinations, and shop for countless other health needs. But CVS customers who rely on certain services will need to make new plans this fall. The drugstore chain has recently revealed that it's getting rid of something in stores across the country. Read on to find out about the big change coming to CVS next month.

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CVS has been permanently closing locations across the U.S.

Over the past few months, CVS has been shuttering stores all across the country. In Nov. 2021, the drugstore chain announced that it would be closing approximately 900 locations by the end of 2024. The closures started this past spring, and 300 stores are expected to close every year for the next three years. So far in 2022, CVS has either announced the upcoming closure or already shuttered stores in a number of states: California, North Carolina, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, South Carolina, Maryland, New York, and Michigan.

But there are other kinds of closures that are also happening, with many remaining CVS locations getting a shake up in August, even as they remain open for business.

The company is ending one in-store service completely.

CVS is making a big change to its eye health services soon. A spokeswoman for CVS told Vision Monday that the company will exit the in-store optical business completely in August.

At the end of 2021, CVS had 52 in-store optical departments across the U.S., according to Vision Monday. Since then, the company has closed six locations, leaving a current total of in-store optical departments in 46 locations. But all of these will be permanently closed as of Aug. 12, the CVS spokeswoman told the news outlet.

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CVS said this is part of its plan to provide resources to other areas.

The CVS spokeswoman told Vision Monday it was a "difficult decision to exit" the in-store optical business. But the company is focused on investing resources in other areas—especially since CVS is already closing 900 of its main drugstores over the next three years to "create new store formats to drive higher engagement with consumers," and ultimately "ensure it has the right kinds of stores in the right locations for consumers and for the business."

"As the leading health solutions company, we invest in high-growth areas of our business and use our unique combination of assets to lower costs, increase access to care and improve health outcomes for consumers, patients and members," CVS said in a statement to Vision Monday. "We regularly review operations to focus resources as efficiently as possible and pivot when necessary to invest in health care services and solutions that will make the greatest impact. This includes evaluating the best way to support optical needs within our overall health care strategy."

But the company will still offer optical services online.

According to Vision Monday, CVS first entered the optical business in Oct. 2015, when it opened five in-store businesses throughout Baltimore, Maryland, and Washington D.C. The drugstore chain's remaining optical departments are located across several states but are mostly concentrated in the states of New York and California, which have 17 and 15 CVS locations with optical services, respectively.

This is not a complete end of vision services from CVS, however. The company has confirmed that it will still be keeping its optical business alive digitally after closing its in-store departments. "Effective August 12, CVS Optical services will be exclusively online," the drugstore chain states on its website. "While we will no longer be offering in-store services, we remain committed to your optical needs online."