OCTOBER 6, 2006 - Posted at 8:04 a.m. CDT
ORLANDO, FL - Wal-Mart announced last month that it will sell select generic prescription drugs at a sharply reduced price in all of Florida, nearly four months earlier than expected.
The world's biggest retailer is already selling 291 generic medications at a price of $4 for a month's supply at its stores in the Tampa Bay area.
Critics say that number is misleading and only amounts to about 125 different drugs because Wal-Mart counted the same drug in different dosages to come up with its total.
The company announced the Tampa Bay program two weeks ago, and Wal-Mart executives said at the time they would look to expand the program statewide in January, and nationwide after that.
But Wal-Mart executives said yesterday that customer demand and request from Florida officials led them to expand the program throughout the state sooner.
The list of drugs has also been expanded to 314 medications. It was not immediately clear how many different drugs are included in that figure.