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Costco Teams With Sesame to Offer Shoppers Health Visits

Costco is offering members medical care via a partnership with online health marketplace Sesame.

The deal comes as several retailers expand their healthcare offerings.

According to the Sesame website, Costco members can access Sesame’s “best pricing” on online primary care visits ($29), checkups ($72) and mental health visits ($79).

Sesame’s goal is “to provide great healthcare to the value-conscious,” said CEO David Goldhill, Bloomberg reported Monday (Sept. 25).

Neither Costco nor Sesame has replied to PYMNTS’ request for comment.

Goldhill founded Sesame in 2018 out of frustration with a healthcare system he found weighed down by outdated treatment and payment methods. He launched the company as a direct-to-consumer (D2C) online marketplace in 2020. A new membership program followed in 2021.

“When I think about how you better control not just the cost of care but also the quality of care and the ability of customers to access it, it’s all about allowing innovation to occur because there are lots of doctors out there who would like to practice medicine in a different way than what the straight-jacket insurance requires,” Goldhill told PYMNTS’ Karen Webster after the membership program debuted.

Costco’s partnership with the company is happening amid a boom in retail healthcare efforts, with companies like Walmart and Amazon investing heavily in their healthcare projects.

For Walmart, that means the expansion of its physical Walmart Health centers. The company has plans to double its network size by the end of next year.

“The retail giant is likely seeking to leverage its physical presence across the country for several reasons: to provide healthcare services and to expand its presence as a one-stop, brick-and-mortar destination that can meet all consumer needs, whether those needs encompass groceries, fuel, money transfers, healthcare or all of the above,” PYMNTS wrote in May.

More recently, reports emerged that Walmart is considering becoming the majority shareholder of primary care chain ChenMed, a deal that would mark its largest venture into the health space thus far.

Amazon, meanwhile, spent $3.9 billion last year to acquire membership-based primary healthcare provider One Medical, which offers in-person, digital and virtual care services.

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