Medicaid prescription claims on the rise

HORSHAM, Pa. — Symphony Health Solutions on Wednesday released research on the affects of the Affordable Care Act on Medicaid drug spending.

The research found that prescription claims for Medicaid patients increased in January by 10% and in February by 14% over the same periods last year. The study also uncovered that average out-of-pocket cost for contraceptives has dropped more than 58% since 2012.

“Even with Medicaid expansion less than three months old, we’re starting to see notable increases in Medicaid prescription claims,” stated Don Otterbein, SVP marketing and product management, Symphony Health Solutions. “We expect this trend to continue and — mostly likely — to increase as newly enrolled Medicaid patients seek healthcare services.”

Out-of-pocket costs for contraceptives began to decline for this class of medication immediately after implementation of the ACA birth control mandate in August 2012. These costs went from a high of $17.54 in July of 2012 down to $7.36 in February this year.

“These reductions in patient costs accelerated when plans launched their annual benefit designs in January 2013,” Otterbein said. “This trend is expected to continue this year although it is starting to slow.”



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