Walgreen, Express Scripts reunite

July 20, 2012

Jewell Washington

(Flickr, SNWEB.ORG Photography, LLC)
After a year-long dispute, Walgreen and Express Scripts announced Thursday that they have struck a new pharmacy network deal.

Two companies that offer prescriptions to millions are back together after nearly a year of public bickering. Express Scripts, the nation’s largest pharmacy benefit manager, and drug chain giant Walgreen broke off its contract about seven months ago.

But the two companies announced this week that they’ve struck a new deal.

Walgreen senior vice-president Graham Atkinson spoke in Chicago on Friday. He said the company wants to win back customer confidence in the pharmacy department.

“We're going to bring the pharmacist from … behind the counter to sit actually at a counter in front,” he said, “so they're seen as being truly an advisor and consultant whether than someone who simply makes sure we put the right pill in the right bottle.”

Atkinson said Walgreens will soon offer lab tests, health checkups and disease advice – starting with stores in downtown Chicago.

Neither company has spoken on the financial terms of the agreement, which will go into effect September 15.