Sudden pharmacy closures due to protests leaves patients without prescriptions

ByMichael Finney and Randall YIp KGO logo
Tuesday, June 2, 2020
Pharmacy closures leave patients without prescriptions
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Recent protests in cities across the Bay Area have caused some businesses to suddenly close and board up their locations. This poses a problem for patients trying to get their essential medications at local pharmacies.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The damage left after protests turned violent has forced the closure of some essential services. CVS and Walgreens are among the drug stores that have been forced to close. This has left some customers scrambling to fulfill prescriptions.

The CVS in San Francisco bears the damage done by looters. The company says it sustained damage at more than 250 stores across the country.

Some 60 stores have been closed as a result.

Stanley Lew of San Francisco found out his neighborhood CVS is among those closed. "I discovered it was just boarded up. There were no notices on the wood boarding. So I just went back home," he said.

CVS also runs the pharmacies inside Target, including one in Oakland.

That major chain announced that it is also temporarily closing stores. However, it declined to provide a number.

Some Walgreens also sustained major damage. The company has not revealed how many stores it has closed.

The closures left many people like Stanley in danger of running out of medication.

"I need it fairly badly because I have a heart condition," said Lew.

In all, he has six medications he takes regularly.

He called his local CVS, but the message simply states the store was closed due to extraordinary circumstances.

That's when he contacted 7 On Your Side. We contacted CVS and said it was in the process of updating its phone tree so that calls would be forwarded to the next available CVS.

Lew will be able to pick up his medication in Burlingame.

"At least they were able to solve my problem fairly quickly," Lew said.

Those who get their medication at pharmacies in Target will also be able to fill their medications at CVS. Customers at Walgreens are also being referred to the nearest open store

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

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