CVS Health picks Lynch to lead company as president, CEO

CVS Health has picked its next president and CEO from among its current group of executive leaders

CVS Health has picked its next president and CEO from among its current group of executive leaders.

The company said Friday that veteran insurance executive Karen Lynch will replace Larry Merlo, who plans to retire February 1.

The 64-year-old Merlo will step down after serving as president and CEO of the drugstore chain and pharmacy benefits manager for a decade.

Lynch, 57, is currently an executive vice president and also president of the company’s Aetna insurance division. CVS Health acquired Aetna in a roughly $69 billion deal it completed in 2018.

Lynch came to CVS Health with Aetna and served as an executive with the Blue Cross-Blue Shield insurer Anthem before that.

Woonsocket, Rhode Island-based CVS Health Corp. runs one of the nation’s largest drugstore chains with about 9,900 retail locations. In addition to selling insurance, it also runs prescription drug plans for big clients like insurers and employers through a large pharmacy benefit management business.