Walmart to open its first campus pharmacy

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. Bringing its health and prescription services as close to college students in its home state as possible, Walmart revealed plans to open a retail pharmacy in a new, scaled-down Walmart store on the campus of the University of Arkansas. The pharmacy, which will open in January, will replace an in-house pharmacy operated since 1984 by the university’s Pat Walker Health Center.

The pharmacy will offer extended hours to meet the needs of students and will be open to students, faculty and local community residents not affiliated with the university, according to Walmart. “Students, faculty, staff, visitors and community members will be able to access a complete retail pharmacy, as well as a variety of groceries and other items when Walmart on Campus opens,” the company reported Monday.

“We are excited about the opportunity to partner with the university and to bring a great place for the students and the surrounding community to purchase prescriptions and other items,” said Keith Keltner, associate marketing manager at Walmart. “This is Walmart's first store of its kind. I think it's a really good fit.”

The Pat Walker Health Center Pharmacy will close Dec. 20 and is currently informing patients about their options to move their prescriptions to the new pharmacy on campus or to another pharmacy. Mary Alice Serafini, the center’s executive director, said she and her staff anticipate “a close working relationship with the Walmart on Campus.

“We believe that the new retail pharmacy will serve our community well with extended hours, access to most prescription insurance plans and close proximity to our health center facility and many on-campus residents,” Serafini added.