Patients with one or more of four chronic diseases who take their medications as prescribed may save the healthcare system as much as $7,800 per patient annually, according to the findings of a CVS Caremark study analyzing annual pharmacy and medical costs over a three-year period.
A CVS Caremark-sponsored study looking at in-person, electronic, telephone, fax and mail communications that counsel patients to stay on their medications found that pharmacists in a retail setting are the most influential healthcare “voices” in promoting medication adherence.
Patients with chronic heart disease are likely to have several doctors and take nearly a dozen medications that are filled in at least two different pharmacies, resulting in many patients struggling to keep their medications straight, according to a new study.
How much adherence lowers total costs, why some patients do not take their medications as prescribed and whether what’s saved in health care offsets higher drug costs are among the questions that have not been as clearly understood.
CVS Caremark’s MinuteClinic continues to evolve and play a greater role in the U.S. healthcare system as evidenced by its expanding footprint, broadening scope of service and growing roster of strategic affiliations.
At press time, the industry was weighing the potential merger of pharmacy benefit manager rivals Express Scripts and Medco Health Solutions, but executives at CVS Caremark remain more confident than ever that its PBM business is ideally positioned to “effectively compete."
Private-label penetration at CVS/pharmacy locations is expected to grow to more than 20% in the next two to three years, and to help drive that growth, the retailer has developed its new Just the Basics line of store-brand products.
CVS Caremark may be highly focused on driving medication adherence, curbing rising healthcare costs and improving the health outcomes of its patients, but there’s no doubt that its retail segment remains a critical part of its business, as evidenced by the innovative initiatives playing out at the front end.
As of Oct. 1, Mark Cosby officially stepped into the role of president of CVS/pharmacy. Cosby’s new stint at 1 CVS Dr. is a far cry from his prior role as president of Macy’s stores. But Cosby’s reputation as an innovator is bound to tie in nicely with the Woonsocket, R.I.-based trailblazer.
Helena Foulkes, one of the brightest, fastest-rising stars of the retail pharmacy industry for more than a decade, earlier this year assumed the newly created position of EVP and chief healthcare strategy and marketing officer.