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CVS Health launches 12th annual CSR Report

BY Sandra Levy

CVS Health has unveiled its 12th annual corporate social responsibility report featuring its “Better Health, Better Community, Better World” platform. The company said its new social purpose strategy is aimed at being more include of its focus on addressing the healthcare system’s complexity and its role in addressing public health challenges at every level.

“2018 was a historic year for our company, as CVS Health combined with Aetna, giving us an opportunity to help fundamentally transform the way health care is delivered,” CVS Health president and CEO Larry Merlo said. “Our new socially-responsible business strategy ensures we put our capabilities and resources to work in tangible ways that make a difference in our local communities and in people’s lives.”

The Better Health, Better Community, Better World platform focuses on three areas — “Building Healthier Communites” by making community health and wellness central to its efforts; “Leading and Inspiring Growth” by creating economic opportunities for its employees, customers, suppliers and investors; and “Protecting Our Planet” by ensuring sustainability is part of its approach to business operations and product development.

This year’s report provides an update on CVS Health’s enterprise commitment to tackling opioid misuse and abuse, including increasing the number of safe medication disposal sites by adding 750 units in CVS Pharmacy locations and expanding the Pharmacists Teach Prescription for Parents program to 26 new states.

The report also includes the company’s annual Communication on Progress to the United Nations Global Compact, or UNGC. CVS Health became the first U.S. pharmacy chain to join UNGC in 2018, confirming the company’s commitment to implementing the Compact’s 10 principles with respect to human rights, labor, the environment and anti-corruption; engaging in partnerships to advance the broader goals of the United Nations; and taking actions in support of the Sustainable Development Goals.

In an effort to reduce the effect of climate change, CVS Health set new greenhouse gas reduction targets in 2018 to reduce the absolute scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 36% by 2030, and to commit that 70% of its suppliers by emissions will set science-based emissions reduction targets on their scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2023. The company also developed a new CSR performance target for its fleet to reduce 2.5 million empty miles in the next five years.

“We believe our greatest opportunities ahead will be a result of our ability to meaningfully impact the health of local communities, bringing together the power of our business and strategic community investment,” senior vice president, corporate social responsibility and philanthropy Eileen Howard Boone said.”I am particularly proud to present this year’s progress report because 2018 marks the biggest move we have ever made as a company in advancing our social business purpose as we welcomed Aetna to our enterprise.”

Other notable accomplishments in 2018 include:

Building Healthier Communities:

  • Delivered $5.3M in free health care services through Project Health;
  • Provided more than $4 million in grants from the company and the CVS Health Foundation to support youth smoking and e-cigarette prevention, as part of its commitment to helping deliver the first tobacco-free generation;
  • Introduced MinuteClinic Virtual Care to provide quality, convenient, and affordable care via a mobile app or desktop computer; and
  • Committed to transparency for all beauty imagery by the end of 2020, celebrating a more authentic representation of beauty.

Leading and Inspiring Growth:

  • Created opportunities for nearly 85,000 new colleagues through workforce development programs and other recruiting efforts;
  • Provided opportunities for 2,800+ youth to participate in myCVS Journey Pathways to Health Care Careers;
  • Hired 3,200+ colleagues through our U.S. Department of Labor Registered Apprenticeship program for pharmacy technicians;
  • Drove a total economic impact of $5.8 billion and supported 38,000+ jobs through our diverse supplier program; and
  • Enhanced our board of directors to include deep insurance company oversight experience by adding four new directors from Aetna.

Protecting Our Planet:

  • Audited 500+ printers that produce packaging for our store brands portfolio to understand their sustainability capabilities;
  • Removed oxybenzone and octinoxate from our store brand sunscreens with SPF 50 and lower;
  • Recognized among the top 3% of 5,000 companies as a CDP Supplier Engagement Leader; and
  • Retrofitted 1,740 retail locations with interior LED lighting, saving $7.5 million in annual energy costs.

The full report is available online.

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