Walgreen Co. said one of its stores in Moore, Okla., has been temporarily closed after sustaining severe damage from this week's devastating tornado.

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Walgreens shuts tornado-damaged store in Okla.

May 23rd, 2013

DEERFIELD, Ill. – Walgreen Co. said one of its stores in Moore, Okla., has been temporarily closed after sustaining severe damage from this week's devastating tornado.

Meanwhile, CVS Caremark Corp. reported Thursday that its two drug store locations and walk-in health clinic in Moore are open.

An aerial view of the tornado damage in Moore, Okla.

Walgreens said late Wednesday that it plans to bring a temporary pharmacy trailer to the store site, located at at 1041 S.W. 19th St. in Moore, as soon as possible to serve the area's pharmacy patients. Plans call for construction workers to begin rebuilding the store this week so it can be reopened for business. According to the retailer's website, there are three Walgreens stores in Moore.

The drug chain said it has stepped up shipments of items such as food, water and first aid supplies, as well as tetanus shots, to keep store shelves and pharmacies stocked with essentials. The company also worked with the Oklahoma Board of Pharmacy to enact emergency procedures that enable pharmacists to help displaced patients refill prescriptions if they lack documentation or an empty prescription bottle.

Employees at Walgreens stores across Oklahoma are inviting customers to make point-of-purchase cash donations to the American Red Cross in amounts of $1, $5 and $10.

"Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to the people of Moore and the entire Oklahoma City area who suffered such devastating losses," Bill Miller, Walgreens' market vice president for Oklahoma, said in a statement. "They include our neighbors, our customers and our employees, and we want to support them in any way we can."

Walgreens reported that at least 18 of its employees suffered property losses, ranging from moderate damage to property and automobiles to homes completely lost. The company said those who experienced losses can apply for financial assistance from the Walgreens Benefit Fund.

Striking Moore, which is in the southern part of the Oklahoma City area, on Monday afternoon, the huge tornado was 1.3 miles wide and packed winds of more than 200 miles per hour, making it an EF5 tornado, the most powerful category. At least 24 people have been killed and more than 300 injured. Approximately 2,400 homes were damaged in Moore and Oklahoma City, and an estimated 10,000 people were directly impacted by the tornado, according to the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management.

Moore is home to two CVS/pharmacy stores and a MinuteClinic medical clinic inside one of the CVS stores. CVS said Thursday the stores are open and "serving the prescription and emergency supplies needs of the community."

According to the company, the CVS/pharmacy on SW 19th Street in Moore will remain open 24 hours a day to serve customers. The MinuteClinic is also open and staffed by nurse practitioners, who are providing critically needed health services in the community, such as tetanus shots and dressing changes, the company added.

The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust on Thursday announced that it will donate $25,000 to the American Red Cross to support its tornado relief efforts in Oklahoma and Texas, where tornadoes had hit days before. In addition, the trust will match tornado relief donations to the Red Cross from CVS Caremark's employees up to an additional $25,000, resulting in a potential combined donation from the trust and CVS Caremark employees of at least $75,000.

"Our thoughts are with everyone in Oklahoma and Texas who have been affected by the recent devastating tornadoes," Larry Merlo, president and chief executive officer of CVS Caremark, said in a statement. "The CVS Caremark Charitable Trust and the American Red Cross have partnered for several years to provide relief to communities impacted by natural disasters. We hope that the contributions of our private foundation and our colleagues will help these communities recover quickly."

CVS/pharmacy has also provided support for tornado relief efforts in Moore. The company has donated more than $5,000 in food, water and personal care products to Feed the Children, an Oklahoma City-based nonprofit group that assists those without life's essentials.

"The dedication of our colleagues who live and work in Moore to keep our locations open, along with our many other colleagues from nearby markets who are providing assistance in this community, is an inspiring realization of our organization's purpose to help people on their path to better health," Merlo added.