Saturday, September 23

Gimme my drugs!

I recently read that

A day after Walmart announced it will lower its prescription drugs cost, Target— the second largest retail store says it will also offer discounted prescription drugs.

Both stores say they will sell generic prescription drugs for as low as four dollars in Tampa, Florida. And by 2007 Walmart plans to offer the discounted drugs nationwide.

At first this seems like a good idea. Who wouldn't be for cheap prescription drugs? When you think about what will happen when all the people needing drugs go to one of those two places, all the other pharmacies, mainly local types, will lose business while Walmart and Target will get more. The smaller ones won't be able to keep up and they don't have the economics of scale. And the fact that Target came out right away to match them makes it seem more like a 'price war' type thing.

Regardless whether they're doing it for the good of people or for their business accounts, it will be interesting to see how it plays out in Madison, a rather unfriendly city to Walmart. Last year, in fact, there was some kind of musical in town that portrayed Walmart in a negative light.

We've got Targets, Walmarts, and Walgreens here. I can't wait to see what ensues. People make issues about how high drug prices are, but are they willing to shop at their nemesis at the expense of their local businesses?

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