Tag: Costco

Costco to new offer weight-loss program possibly including Ozempic

Costco and its low-cost health care partner are expanding into weight-loss management.

Costco will begin offering its members in the U.S. access to a weight loss program through Sesame, a health care marketplace, Sesame exclusively told USA TODAY. The service, which will cost $179 every three months, is scheduled to become available April 2.

“We are witnessing important innovations in medically supervised weight loss,” said David Goldhill, Sesame‘s co-founder and CEO. “Sesame’s unique model allows us not only to make high-quality specialty care like weight loss much more accessible and affordable but also to empower clinicians to create care plans that are specific to − and appropriate for − each individual patient.”

Last fall, Costco began offering $29 visits with a primary care physician through its partnership with Sesame. It also offered virtual mental health therapy for $79 a session and health checkups with a standard lab panel and virtual follow-up consultation with a provider for $72.

The expansion into medical weight loss services by Sesame with Costco came as a result of inquiries from patients, Goldhill told USA TODAY.

“The No. 1 search term of Costco members seeking primary care on Sesame was around weight loss,” Goldhill said.

Both parties got together about two months after the primary care doctor partnership started to begin looking into offering weight loss management because consumers were coming to Sesame “unprompted and saying ‘What do you have?’ ” he said.

How does Costco’s weight loss program work?

This is what’s included for $179 every three months for Costco members:

  • Three months of clinical consultation.
  • Ability to select the clinician of your choice.
  • An initial live video consultation with the clinician.
  • Ability to message your clinician outside scheduled appointments.
  • A nutritional guide and recommendations.
  • An individualized, clinically appropriate treatment program.

Sesame clinicians will begin

Costco sued for unlawfully sharing pharmacy patient health care data

Costco pharmacy department-Folsom CA club_Shutterstock

The suit was filed in Washington Western District Court by four Costco customers who used the retailer’s pharmacy services via its website or app. / Photo: Shutterstock

Several members of Costco Wholesale have initiated a federal class-action lawsuit claiming the warehouse club giant illegally shared personal health information.

Filed on Friday in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, the suit alleges that online activity-tracking technology used by Costco—including Meta Pixel code from Facebook parent Meta Platforms—captured sensitive and personally identifiable health data while these customers interacted with the Costco Pharmacy website and/or mobile app and transmitted that information to third parties, including Meta, without their consent.

Issaquah, Washington-based Costco couldn’t immediately be reached by Winsight Grocery Business for comment on the lawsuit, titled Castillo et al v. Costco Wholesale Corporation.

The four plaintiffs are California residents and Costco Pharmacy patients. According to the case documents, they ordered new prescriptions and refills; searched for medications, drug pricing and Medicare supplemental insurance; reviewed co-payment information; checked script pickup times; communicated with pharmacy staff; and provided “personal, private and highly sensitive information” while using the retailer’s pharmacy website or app.

Costco’s use of Pixel “compromised and disclosed to third parties”—without pharmacy patient authorization—such information as computer IP addresses, patient status, prescription details, vaccinations, treatments, patient location and health insurance coverage, as well as unique identifiers used to link patients’ private communications through the website to their Facebook accounts, the complaint said. All four plaintiffs indicated they generally remained logged into their Facebook accounts while online with Costco Pharmacy.

“Specifically, Defendant [Costco] used the sensitive information to gain additional insights into its patients and prospective patients, improve its return on its marketing dollars and, ultimately, to increase revenue. Costco encouraged Plaintiffs and the Class
Members [pharmacy customers] to access and use

Costco Sued, Accused Of Sharing Confidential Health Data With Facebook

Costco Wholesale Corp (NASDAQ: COST) is facing legal action, accused of sharing sensitive customer information with Meta Platforms Inc (NASDAQ: META), the parent company of Facebook, without the customers’ approval.

A Seattle federal court lawsuit claims that the wholesale giant used Meta’s analytical tool, Meta Pixel, on its website, compromising the privacy of its customers.

The tool, designed to track website visitors and their activities, allegedly provided Meta with access to a wealth of personal data, including susceptible health information of pharmacy users, the New York Post reports.

This revelation raises concerns about user privacy and data security, especially for customers who rely on Costco’s online pharmacy services.

The plaintiffs, four California residents, assert that Costco assured them of the confidentiality and security of their data on its platform. However, the lawsuit alleges that the company did not disclose its practice of sharing online activities and health information with Meta via Pixel, implying a violation of privacy and a breach of Washington State’s privacy laws, prohibiting user data’s unauthorized sharing, the NY post writes.

Although not named as a defendant, Meta clarified its position, emphasizing that its policies prohibit advertisers from sending sensitive information about individuals through its Business Tools.

The company asserts that it educates advertisers on the proper setup of Business Tools to prevent such occurrences and that its system is designed to filter out potentially sensitive data, according to the NY Post.

The plaintiffs are demanding a trial by jury, financial damages, and a declaration of Costco’s alleged unlawful conduct.

In 2023, the Irish Data Protection Commission slapped Meta with a penalty of a record €1.2 billion ($1.3 billion) for user privacy invasion.

Price Action: COST shares traded higher by 0.39% at $564.26 on the last check Wednesday.

Disclaimer: This content was partially

Costco accused of sharing users’ health data with Meta

Costco allegedly shared website users’ private communications and health information with Facebook-parent Meta without their consent, a lawsuit filed Friday said.

The lawsuit filed in Washington Western District Court alleges Issaquah-based Costco used Meta Pixel, a code that allows companies to track visitor activity on their websites, in the health care portion of its website. The tracking pixel would allow Meta to have access to users’ personal and health information.

“Costco represents to patients that its website, which includes its pharmacy webpages, is a secure platform,” said the suit, which is seeking a class-action status. “Yet, Costco fails to disclose or omits the fact that it shares patient online activities and personal health information with Meta via Pixel.”

Costco’s executive vice president of administration Patrick Callans said in an email Monday that the company won’t comment on pending litigation. The retailer has not filed an answer in court. 

Meta, which is not named as a defendant in this lawsuit, said in a statement its system can filter out sensitive data.

“Advertisers should not send sensitive information about people through our business tools,” Meta said Monday. “Doing so is against our policies and we educate advertisers on properly setting up business tools to prevent this from occurring.” Costco is considered a Meta advertiser.

Costco’s pharmacy services include prescription refills, vaccine scheduling and home delivery. For users to sign up for the pharmacy services, they need to give Costco personal and health information. According to the lawsuit, Costco says it keeps the information secure and private, but using tracking services including Pixel violates the privacy.

“By secretly recording and transmitting data to Meta — without the user’s knowledge or consent — Pixel acts much like a traditional wiretap,” the lawsuit said.

Costco also violated users’ privacy because it let Meta collect communications

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