Amazon on Tuesday opened an online pharmacy ready to deliver prescriptions to customers in 45 states.
The online retailer will begin filing commonly-prescribed medications, The Associated Press reported, including creams and drugs that must be kept refrigerated.
According to Amazon, the service will allow consumers to set up profiles and have drugs filled and refilled as a doctor prescribes.
The company will accept most insurance prescription plans, Amazon said, and if you are an Amazon Prime member, and you don’t have insurance, you can buy generic or brand-name drugs from the company at a discount.
Prime members can also get discounts at 50,000 physical pharmacies around the country, inside Costco, CVS, Walgreens, Walmart and other stores, according to the AP.
While it will ship a large variety of prescription medications, Amazon says it will not ship medications that can be abused, such as opioids.
Amazon says the service will work like this: a person will create a pharmacy profile that includes your medications, any allergies you may have and other basic information.
Then you will either contact your doctor to have a prescription sent to Amazon, or you can have Amazon contact your physician to get the prescription.
Once the prescription is received, it will be filled and sent out for delivery. Prime members get free two-day delivery, and all customers get free 4-5 day delivery or can upgrade to two-day delivery for $5.99 per shipment.
The service will compete with brick-and-mortar drugstores, the AP pointed out.
CVS and Walgreens have been been trying to compete against the growing tide of online shopping, the AP story said, with such test programs as deliveries with self-driving vehicles, and experimenting with drones that can deliver minutes after being ordered.
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