Amazon Offers Online Prescription Drugs Service
Amazon Pharmacy: Direct, Online Prescription Drug Services
Starts This Week
Amazon just announced another innovative business addition to its online retail portfolio. It's opening a discount online pharmacy for prescription medications. For Amazon Prime members, the drug will be delivered right to the customer's door, for free, within two days.
Amazon Pharmacy puts Amazon in direct competition with traditional pharmacies like CVS and Walgreens. And the timing couldn't be better. Many consumers are seeking to obtain their medicines online and avoid going into the pharmacy because of COVID. Amazon says their new business line is designed to make it easy and convenient to order prescription medicines online. The service is rolling out in the US this week.
$300 Billion Market
For Amazon, the stakes are big. Prescription medicines are a $300 billion industry in the US. Amazon has been quietly building its prescription business. In 2018, it bought PillPack and is now using that business unit's infrastructure, software, fulfillment centers and health plan relationships to roll out Amazon Pharmacy.
Amazon will accept most types of insurance and may offer discounts to consumers with no insurance. Both generic and branded drugs will be offered. Prime members will have access to a program called "prescription savings benefit" that offers discounts up to 80% on generics and up to 40% on brand name drugs.