UPDATE 1-CVS Health profit beats on higher prescription drug sales

(Adds details on results, compares with estimates)

Aug 8 (Reuters) - Drugstore retailer CVS Health Corp beat analyst estimates for adjusted quarterly profit on Wednesday as it sold more prescription drugs at its stores.

CVS, which agreed to buy health insurer Aetna in a $69 billion deal in December, said it now expects the deal to close during the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter of 2018.

The Aetna deal is likely to reshape healthcare in the United States as brings together one of the nation's largest pharmacy benefits managers (PBMs) and pharmacy operators with one of its oldest health insurers, whose national business ranges from employer healthcare to government plans.

Net loss attributable to CVS was $2.56 billion, or $2.52 per share, in the second quarter ended June 30, compared with a profit of $1.10 billion, or $1.07 per share, a year earlier.

CVS said it took a $3.9 billion goodwill impairment charge in the reported quarter related to its retail business.

Excluding items, the company earned $1.69 per share, beating analysts' average estimate of $1.61, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Same-store sales rose 5.9 percent and pharmacy same-store sales increased 8.3 percent in the three months ended June 30, driven by an increase in prescription volumes.

Net revenue rose 2 percent to $46.71 billion. (Reporting by Ankur Banerjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)