By 2024, 900 CVS Pharmacy locations will be shut down.

Grand Forks Herald reports that, while 900 CVS Pharmacy locations will be closed across the country by 2024, North Dakota likely will not see any closures. Why? Well, there is actually a big reason that the North Dakota locations are probably safe from shutting down. It has to do with a unique North Dakota law that allows CVS Pharmacy to be the only major national chain pharmacy in the state.

A 1963 law requires pharmacies to be 51% owned by pharmacists.

Do you ever wonder why there are no pharmacies in North Dakota Walmarts and Targets? It is because of a 1963 law that requires pharmacies to be 51% owned by pharmacists. So, how is CVS able to operate as a pharmacy in the state? It is because the company bought out another pharmacy company that was established before the law went into effect.

It is smart business for CVS Pharmacy to keep all the North Dakota locations open.

According to Grand Forks Herald, CVS Pharmacy can operate in North Dakota because the former Osco Drug was established in the state before the pharmacist ownership law was put in place. That means CVS Pharmacy definitely has an advantage over the major retailers that cannot open pharmacies in the state. It is actually a wise business move for CVS to keep all six North Dakota locations as they have no major retail competitors.

Should stores like Walmart and Target be allowed to have pharmacies?

Walmart has reportedly tried to fight the law, but North Dakotans want the pharmacy law to remain in effect. One could argue that letting major retailers operate pharmacies would bring down the cost of prescription medication. However, North Dakota already ranks at number 13 out of the 25 states with the lowest pharmacy costs. But, you know, that big-box competition could drive customer prescription costs lower.

Do you think that North Dakota should keep or repeal its pharmacy law?

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