Retail Pharmacy’s New Challenge as Dollar General Plans to Expand its Health Care Offerings

Dollar General operates 18,356 stores in 47 states. For the fiscal 2022 fiscal year, the retailer plans to open 1,110 new stores and complete 1,750 remodels and 120 relocations. More than 18,000 stores are located within five miles of about 75% of the US population.

Moving forward, Dollar General remains focused on advancing its operating priorities and strategic initiatives as the company continues to strengthen its competitive position, while further differentiating Dollar General from the rest of the retail landscape.

Dollar General’s expanded health offering consists of up to 30% more feet of selling space and up to 400 additional items as compared to the company standard offering. This offering was available in nearly 1,800 stores at the end of Q1, and Dollar General is on track to expand to a total of more than 4,000 stores by the end of 2022.

Looking ahead, Dollar General plans include further expansion of its health offering with the goal of increasing access to basic healthcare products and ultimately services over time, particularly in rural America.

As part of this effort, Dollar General created the Healthcare Advisory Panel, a body of health care industry subject-matter experts who will serve as “thought partners” and strategists in helping Dollar General develop its strategy and best invest its resources in the health and wellness arena.

Last July, Dollar General had unveiled plans to grow its health care business to meet more customer needs and establish itself as a health care destination. The effort included an increased assortment of cough and cold, dental, nutritional, medical, health aids and feminine hygiene products across many Dollar General stores.

Dollar General hired Dr. Albert Wu from McKinsey & Co. for the newly created post of vice president and chief medical officer. In the role, Wu is charged with establishing and bolstering relationships with health care product and service providers to “build a comprehensive network of affordable services for DG customers,” according to Dollar General.

Joining Wu on the Healthcare Advisory Panel, Dollar General said, are the following experts:

  • Patrick Carroll, a physician leader with experience across retail health, managed care and integrated delivery networks. He currently serves as chief medical officer of Vida Health and formerly held roles as chief medical officer at Walgreens, Hims & Hers and Hartford Healthcare.
  • Katy Lanz, a health care executive and entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in designing, implementing and scaling care delivery models. She now serves as chief strategy and product officer at Personal Care Medical Associates and is a national board director for the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.
  • Von Nguyen, a physician, population health expert and public health leader with experience in building successful collaborations across organizations to improve the health and well-being of populations. He currently is clinical lead of public and population health at Google.
  • Yolanda Hill Wimberly, a board-certified physician in pediatrics and adolescent medicine, Wimberly is senior vice president and chief health equity officer at Grady Health Systems, responsible for leading the strategic direction of Grady Health System in health equity.


Takeaway: Dollar General has seen the drug channel become the company’s largest share donor and plans to become a leading company in the space