ALBERTSONS' FIRST MEDICAL CLINIC OPENS IN NEW STORE

BOISE, Idaho -- Albertsons has opened a store in Bakersfield, Calif., with its first medical clinic, said Stacia Levenfeld, a company spokeswoman.The Chester Medical Clinic was previously located in the same shopping center adjacent to the Brundage Pharmacy that Albertsons bought out in March 2000 prior to building the 47,000-square-foot store. Albertsons operated the freestanding pharmacy until the

BOISE, Idaho -- Albertsons has opened a store in Bakersfield, Calif., with its first medical clinic, said Stacia Levenfeld, a company spokeswoman.

The Chester Medical Clinic was previously located in the same shopping center adjacent to the Brundage Pharmacy that Albertsons bought out in March 2000 prior to building the 47,000-square-foot store. Albertsons operated the freestanding pharmacy until the supermarket opened last month with its own pharmacy, Levenfeld said.

The clinic served the needs of Medicare and low-income residents in the area, Levenfeld said. "When Albertsons made the decision to construct a store on the site, we recognized the value the medical center held in the community," she said.

While located within the Albertsons store, the clinic leases space from the supermarket and has its own entrance in the front of the store, she said. There is no operational or marketing interaction between the clinic and the store's pharmacy, she noted.

"This is the first time we have accommodated a medical clinic within the structure of a store," Levenfeld said. It is also unusual in the supermarket industry. The Cub Foods division of Supervalu, Eden Prairie, Minn., has clinics staffed by nurses, and other retailers offer screening services.

Albertsons has no plans for putting medical clinics in other stores, Levenfeld said.