Menu

Walmart is testing a new (and inexpensive) health center model

You can see a doctor, a dentist and even a mental health therapist.

Walmart health center
Walmart Health

What if we told you there was a place where uninsured people could stop in for medical checkups and only shell out $30 for the appointment? This may seem at odds with the way our healthcare market is currently shaped—but there is a place where this sort of model exists. And that place is Walmart.

The new offering is called Walmart Health, and it is only available at two locations, at least right now. But Walmart is hoping to expand the clinic concept and some are betting the model will prompt a health revolution in the United States by offering transparent (and low) prices.

FEATURED VIDEO

Here's what you need to know: Two Walmart locations, both in Georgia (one is located in Dallas, GA; the other in Calhoun, GA), offer medical appointments on either an appointment or drop-in basis. As for pricing, patients pay just $30 for a medical checkup ($20 for kids), while dental cleanings run $25 and mental health therapy sessions go for $1 a minute.

Let's not get this new Walmart Health model confused with the walk-in clinics that already exist at many locations, tucked inside the stores, or similar models at drug store chains. At those kinds of clinics you might see a nurse practitioner or a doctor for a sore throat one time, but the new Walmart Health centers are a full service approach. It's not trying to be a quick stop where you could get a prescription in a pinch, it's trying to deliver primary care.

The two existing locations have separate entrances and employ physicians, dentists and therapists and other health care workers. Patients can access X-rays, lab tests, fitness classes and eye exams in these locations.

While we don't know exactly how these two centers are faring, a Walmart executive tells Bloomberg that volume has exceeded the retailer's expectations.

According to CNN, Walmart chose Dallas and Calhoun as test towns for Walmart Health because the communities don't have as many primary care physicians as other communities do and also have higher rates of chronic disease. Uninsured people can seek out affordable health care at the clinics and the communities are reportedly enjoying the transparency of pricing. Anyone who has experienced that awful thing that happens when you receive a medical bill and have no idea what to expect (often the price is shockingly high) can understand why this transparency is coveted. By laying out pricing in a clear manner, Walmart aims to eliminate this shock.

Ateev Mehrota, an associate professor of health care policy at Harvard Medical School, told CNN the expanded clinics are "increasing access to care" in these two underserved communities.

Walmart corporate tells Motherly it plans to expand Walmart Health into other communities in Georgia. The next clinic planned is the Loganville, GA location which will open in the summer.

We'll have to wait to see how this all unfolds: We don't know if this model will appear at other Walmart locations or if pricing will remain stable. We don't know what its limitations really look like or how patient care will operate and evolve in the long term, or how accepting citizens will be of health care under the Walmart banner.

"Walmart has struggled historically to be seen as a good citizen," Witold Henisz, professor of management at the Wharton School, told CNBC in 2019, noting criticism of the wages and working conditions at the retail giant.

But Walmart says it's committed to the communities it serves, and when it comes to health care there are many underserved communities that have a Walmart but perhaps not a hospital. A lot remains to be seen as far as Walmart Health goes, but we do know that all parents want to be able to take their child to the doctor when they need one and all communities should have access to health care.

By its very nature, motherhood requires some lifestyle adjustments: Instead of staying up late with friends, you get up early for snuggles with your baby. Instead of spontaneous date nights with your honey, you take afternoon family strolls with your little love. Instead of running out of the house with just your keys and phone, you only leave with a fully loaded diaper bag.

For breastfeeding or pumping mamas, there is an additional layer of consideration around when, how and how much your baby will eat. Thankfully, when it comes to effective solutions for nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, Dr. Brown's puts the considerations of mamas and their babies first with products that help with every step of the process—from comfortably adjusting to nursing your newborn to introducing a bottle to efficiently pumping.

With countless hours spent breastfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, the editors at Motherly know the secret to success is having dependable supplies that can help you feed your baby in a way that matches lifestyle.

Here are 9 breastfeeding and pumping products to help you no matter what the day holds.

Customflow™ Double Electric Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's electric pump

For efficient, productive pumping sessions, a double electric breast pump will help you get the job done as quickly as possible. Quiet for nighttime pumping sessions and compact for bringing along to work, this double pump puts you in control with fully adjustable settings.

$159.99

Hands-Free Pumping Bra

Dr. Brown''s hands free pumping bra

Especially in the early days, feeding your baby can feel like a pretty consuming task. A hands-free pumping bra will help you reclaim some of your precious time while pumping—and all mamas will know just how valuable more time can be!

$29.99

Manual Breast Pump with SoftShape™ Silicone Shield

Dr. Brown's manual breast pump

If you live a life that sometimes takes you away from electrical outlets (that's most of us!), then you'll absolutely want a manual breast pump in your arsenal. With two pumping modes to promote efficient milk expression and a comfort-fitted shield, a manual pump is simply the most convenient pump to take along and use. Although it may not get as much glory as an electric pump, we really appreciate how quick and easy this manual pump is to use—and how liberating it is not to stress about finding a power supply.

$29.99

Nipple Shields and Sterilization Case

Dr. Brown's nipple shields

There is a bit of a learning curve to breastfeeding—for both mamas and babies. Thankfully, even if there are some physical challenges (like inverted nipples or a baby's tongue tie) or nursing doesn't click right away, silicone nipple shields can be a huge help. With a convenient carry case that can be sterilized in the microwave, you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria either. 🙌

$9.99

Silicone One-Piece Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's silicone pump

When you are feeding your baby on one breast, the other can still experience milk letdown—which means it's a golden opportunity to save some additional milk. With a silent, hands-free silicone pump, you can easily collect milk while nursing.

$14.99

Breast to Bottle Pump & Store Feeding Set

After a lifetime of nursing from the breast, introducing a bottle can be a bit of a strange experience for babies. Dr. Brown's Options+™ and slow flow bottle nipples were designed with this in mind to make the introduction to bottles smooth and pleasant for parents and babies. As a set that seamlessly works together from pumping to storing milk to bottle feeding, you don't have to stress about having everything you need to keep your baby fed and happy either.

$24.99

Washable Breast Pads

washable breast pads

Mamas' bodies are amazingly made to help breast milk flow when it's in demand—but occasionally also at other times. Especially as your supply is establishing or your breasts are fuller as the length between feeding sessions increase, it's helpful to use washable nursing pads to prevent breast milk from leaking through your bra.

$8.99

Breast Milk Storage Bags

Dr. Brown's milk storage bags

The essential for mamas who do any pumping, breast milk storage bags allow you to easily and safely seal expressed milk in the refrigerator or freezer. Dr. Brown's™ Breast Milk Storage Bags take it even further with extra thick walls that block out scents from other food items and feature an ultra secure lock to prevent leaking.

$7.99


Watch one mama's review of the new Dr. Brown's breastfeeding line here:

This article was sponsored by Dr. Brown's. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

Our Partners

Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Meri Meri: Decor and gifts that bring the wonder of childhood to life

We could not be more excited to bring the magic of Meri Meri to the Motherly Shop. For over 30 years, their playful line of party products, decorations, children's toys and stationery have brought magic to celebrations and spaces all over the world. Staring as a kitchen table endeavor with some scissors, pens and glitter in Los Angeles in 1985, Meri Meri (founder Meredithe Stuart-Smith's childhood nickname) has evolved from a little network of mamas working from home to a team of 200 dreaming up beautiful, well-crafted products that make any day feel special.

We've stocked The Motherly Shop with everything from Halloween must-haves to instant-heirloom gifts kiddos will adore. Whether you're throwing a party or just trying to make the everyday feel a little more special, we've got you covered.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

Keep reading Show less
Shop

Errands and showers are not self-care for moms

Thinking they are is what's burning moms out.

A friend and I bump into each other at Target nearly every time we go. We don't pre-plan this; we must just be on the same paper towel use cycle or something. Really, I think there was a stretch where I saw her at Target five times in a row.

We've turned it into a bit of a running joke. "Yeah," I say sarcastically, "We needed paper towels so you know, I had to come to Target… for two hours of alone time."

She'll laugh and reply, "Oh yes, we were out of… um… paper clips. So here I am, shopping without the kids. Heaven!"

Now don't get me wrong. I adore my trips to Target (and based on the fullness of my cart when I leave, I am pretty sure Target adores my trips there, too).

But my little running joke with my friend is actually a big problem. Because why is the absence of paper towels the thing that prompts me to get a break? And why on earth is buying paper towels considered a break for moms?

Keep reading Show less
Life