Walmart announced the launch of the Walmart Healthcare Research Institute (WHRI) to increase community access to healthcare research that may help lead to safer, higher quality and more equitable healthcare.
WHRI will be focused on interventions and medications that can make a difference in underrepresented communities including older adults, rural residents, women and minority populations. WHRI initially is focused on inclusion in studies on treatments for chronic conditions and treatments that should include members from these communities.
Walmart is working with a range of study partners including clinical research organizations, pharmaceutical companies and academic medical centers including CTI Clinical Trial & Consulting Services and Laina Enterprises.
“The efforts by Walmart in research are innovative and impactful – it is clear that the intention behind their foray into this space is to genuinely make a difference for patients of all ages, race and gender in their ability to access research,” said Bill Hawkins, Chairman of the Board, Duke University Health. “This initiative will support individual patient health as well as the health of numerous communities home to Walmart stores.”
To help make it easier for research patients to simplify their care, Walmart launched MyHealthJourney, a digital tool that lets patients take control of their own data through easy access to their eligible medical records and insurance information online in one place. With MyHealthJourney, patients receive reminders for care services and research opportunities to help them keep their health on track.
“Walmart's research initiative aligns with North Carolina A&T's strategic plans to further expand its local, regional and national community engagement activities in order to reduce social, economic and health disparities within African American populations,” said Dr. Raymond Samuel, Professor of Biology, North Carolina A&T State University; Center of Outreach in Alzheimer’s Aging and Community Health; Past Project Director, Hampton University-based Minority Men’s Health Initiative (MMHI). “Walmart's interest in ensuring that DEIA is at the core of its effort to increase customer access to clinical trials is in synergy with the historical commitment of NC A&T to enhancing the well-being of its communities.”