Health and Retail: A 21st Century Marriage

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 171 views 

Editor’s Note: Marie Clapper is executive producer for “Focus on Suppliers.”

Ross and Rachel. Green eggs and ham. Kermit and Piggy. All twosomes of the past. Today’s most exciting couple? Health and retail.

Changes and opportunities abound when combining wellness and in-store purchasing. As we interviewed guests for our “Focus on Suppliers” show about the health category, the signs of a hearty future for these two became obvious.


The Millennial Effect

Jessica Hendrix (Saatchi & Saatchi X) reveals that millennials are the number one users of in-store clinics. “Forty-three percent of millennials use over-the-counter drugs to cure their ills. Just as they do in the rest of their lives, millennials like the do-it-yourself business — even when it comes to health and wellness.”

So suppliers are wise to use all available options, including social content and online information, to give millennials information about their health and wellness products and drive them to the stores to further explore their options.


The Significance of America’s

Biggest Health Fair

On Oct. 15, for the second year running, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will host a national event that offers in-store screenings and immunizations and also dispenses an array of healthy products to shoppers.

Alex Hurd (senior director of product development, growth and payer innovation in health & wellness at Walmart) tells us that, last year, nurses conducted 300,000 screenings (one of which appears to have saved a life that very day) and 50,000 immunizations — plus distributed over 2 million product samples. This year, even higher numbers are expected.

Of those customers who had, for example, blood pressure checked, one in three had not been to a pharmacist in the past year. But because of this event, that is precisely where those shoppers found themselves.

So with this concept, Walmart, through its 4,400 stores, is helping America reimagine preventive health care. For the shopper who doesn’t know how to take care of his health or doesn’t have the time or doesn’t have the funds, America’s Biggest Health Fair is a convenient and comfortable solution that feels as natural as buying a dozen eggs.


The Impact of Product Transitions

Kerry Bailey (director of retail, Menasha), during his conversation with show host Neile Jones, says that several drugs are moving from behind-the-counter to over-the-counter.

“There is a retail revolution in health care, and retailers and suppliers are racing to find provide additional solutions to consumers,” he says.

Some entirely new categories are emerging, Bailey adds, because they are transitioning from prescription to front-of-store — gastro-intestinal products and allergy products, for example. The in-home health care products category also is exploding, he adds, because adult children in their 30s and 40s are now caring for ailing parents and trying to keep them in their homes to be as independent as possible for as long as possible.

They are a lovely couple — health and retail. We wish them years of happiness and prosperity together.

See the “Focus on Suppliers” episode focusing on health and wellness on Sept. 3, or watch it now at 



The show regularly broadcasts weekly on KNWA-NBC at 6:30 p.m. Saturdays and 5 a.m. Sundays.

September 3: Reimagining Health Care

8th & Walton – Joel Graham

Dress for Success NWA – Virginia Germann

Hall Estill – Steve Broussard

Menasha – Kerry Bailey

Saatchi & Saatchi X – Jessica Hendrix

Sam’s Club – Tracey Brown

Vi-Jon – Darcy Meier

Walmart – Alex Hurd


September 10: Baby

GRACO – Bill Norman

Infantino – Lee Clemons

Kimberly-Clark – Drew Phillips

NUK – Tina Winham

nwaMotherlode – Gwen Rockwood and

Shannon Magsam

Saatchi & Saatchi X – Jessica Hendrix


Full episodes and extended interviews can be found online at and Currently scheduled guests and episodes are subject to change.