Walmart Begins Providing Vision Benefits to Employees Through VSP


BENTONVILLE, Ark.—This month, the world’s largest retailer, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) started offering vision benefits to its employees through the country’s largest managed vision care company, VSP Vision Care. Walmart began offering its eligible employees and their dependents the opportunity to sign up for a vision plan with coverage starting Jan. 1, 2014. With the potential for a million new members, this represents “the biggest contract in the history of VSP,” a VSP spokesperson told VMail.

In late August 2013, Wal-Mart Stores announced that it would include vision benefits within an updated package that also included domestic partner benefits, 100 percent coverage for some surgeries and smoking cessation incentives.

Walmart is offering its employees VSP’s Choice Plan, which provides a comprehensive eye exam and covered lenses, frames and contacts, according to a VSP spokesperson, who told VMail that the company expects a 20 percent to 30 percent enrollment rate the first year. Eyecare providers available to the plan’s participants will be Walmart Vision Center, Sam’s Club Optical and VSP providers who accept the Choice Plan, according to the VSP spokesperson. There are no affiliates, and no out-of-network services are covered, the spokesperson added.

“VSP is excited to announce, for the first time ever, nearly one million Walmart Associates and their dependents will have the chance to enroll in a vision plan,” said Jim McGrann, president, VSP Vision Care. “This is a great win for VSP network providers and offers the opportunity to access Walmart Associates who now can choose to use their benefit by visiting a VSP provider.”