PHARMACY

CVS Health’s Moriarty: Pharmacy services, clinics can cut Medicaid costs, improve outcomes

BY David Salazar

WASHINGTON — At the POLITICO Pro Health Care Briefing on Medicaid as a Driver of Care Innovation in the States Tuesday, CVS Health chief policy and external affairs officer Tom Moriarty shared with attendees CVS Health’s efforts to bring better value for patients to the healthcare system.

From the outset, Moriarty highlighted the role that pharmacists can play in helping reach patients with chronic conditions and improve their adherence through personalized interactions. He pointed to a Health Affairs study that found one-on-one counseling from pharmacists can improve adherence and save $3 for every $1 invested in these efforts.

“Through personalized counseling and clinically-effective interventions, pharmacists are a trusted voice in helping patients with chronic conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular disease manage their medications,” he said.

Two key efforts that CVS Health uses to reach patients are its Transform Diabetes program — which provides personalized support and one-on-one counseling, as well as MinuteClinic comprehensive diabetes visits, a connected glucometer and access to digital tools — and its Pharmacy Advisor program. However, Moriarty noted that not all Medicaid Quality Programs include adherence and medication management measures in their pharmacy benefits.

He also pointed to the opportunity for affordable care that CVS Health’s MinuteClinic locations offer Medicaid beneficiaries. In fact, Moriarty noted that MinuteClinic is an enrolled Medicaid provider in 31 states and the District of Columbia, and that its availability at more than 1,100 locations can have an impact on patient health and costs.

“Through affiliations with 70 major medical systems, we can facilitate joint clinical programs and real-time integration of electronic health records, enabling coordination across providers,” Moriarty said. “Research shows that patients who use MinuteClinic make fewer ER visits, and overall their health care costs are about 8 percent lower.”

Moriarty also highlighted efforts that CVS Health’s Caremark pharmacy benefits manager makes to deliver lower cost prescription drugs, particularly in Ohio, where CVS Caremark worked with Ohio Medicaid’s managed care plans to control costs.

“As a result, Ohio spent 13.3 percent less — on average — than states without prescription drugs in their managed care system and earned higher average quality scores than the national and state averages,” he said. “These strategies can play a significant role in delivering value, but Medicaid programs need to be structured in a way that reward and incentivize better outcomes.”

He called for a consistent set of quality measures alongside meaningful incentives as a methof to improve health outcomes and drive Medicaid savings — both on the federal and state levels

“We must also recognize the important role that pharmacy management and medication utilization play in health outcomes and the total cost of care, particularly for those with chronic disease,” Moriarty said. “Including pharmacy programs and incentivizing medication adherence ultimately delivers better value to patients and taxpayers through better health outcomes and lower costs.”

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PHARMACY

Upsher-Smith’s McBride given HDA Research Foundation’s Nexus award

BY David Salazar

PHOENIX — The Healthcare Distribution Alliance’s nonprofit HAD Research Foundation has awarded Upsher-Smith Laboratories’ VP partner relations Mike McBride its 2017 Nexus Award for Lifetime Achievement.

The award — which was given by the foundation, alongside Genentech and Mylan at the HDA’s annual Business and Leadership Conference — recognizes character and professional accomplishments, as well as leadership in HDA, the industry and the community.

“For more than 60 years, the Nexus has recognized extraordinary supply chain leaders,” HDA president and CEO and HDA Research Foundation president John Gray said. “HDA and the HDA Research Foundation are pleased to continue the proud legacy of the Nexus Award by recognizing Mike McBride — a consummate team player and champion for trade relations — with the distribution industry’s highest honor.”

Mike McBride

McBride began his career at Upsher Smith in 1988 as a consumer sales associate and rose through the company to lead its national account team. He helped grow the company’s product lines as it added branded pharmaceuticals to its generics portfolio, and he played a key role in establishing its consumer products, managed markets and institutional sales teams.

In 2005 he began his work in an industry relations role, helping build Upsher-Smith’s trading partner relationships. In his current role, McBride works to establish and grow relationships with chain, wholesale and other partners to support product developments. He also helped facilitate Upsher-Smith’s divestiture of its AmLactin brand to Sandoz in late 2016.

“For almost 30 years, Mike’s leadership — driven by his ability to connect with colleagues and collaborators, and tireless dedication to advancing industry excellence — has not only benefited Upsher-Smith, but the entire supply chain,” Upsher-Smith president Rusty Field said. “All of us at Upsher-Smith are lucky to work with Mike every day, and thrilled that HDA has recognized his unique vision and talents by presenting him with the 2017 Nexus Award.”

McBride has been involved with HDA and other pharmaceutical supply chain organizations for more than 10 years and has been a member of its industry relations council, as well as its manufacturers’ government affairs advisory committee, among other working groups. Because of his work, Upsher-Smith has been recognized multiple times with HDA's DIANA awards, and it was named HDA’s Manufacturer Partner of the Year in 2014.

“Over the past decade that I have had the pleasure of working with him, Mike has shown great passion for his industry, at many times serving as a sounding board for his fellow trading partners,” HDA EVP industry relations, membership and education Perry Fri said. “Quite simply, he is an exceptional person and the embodiment of what the Nexus represents for the pharmaceutical supply chain.

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PrescribeWellness shares PharmacyGrowth results

BY David Salazar

IRVINE, Calif. — Cloud-based pharmacy services company PrescribeWellness has shared new data showing that its PharmacyGrowth solution has helped community pharmacies increase their script volume, improve patient adherence and deliver on customer satisfaction. PharmacyGrowth is the latest addition to the company’s suite of engagement tools, and was developed to help community pharmacies offer more personalized service to their patients.

PrescribeWellness said the platform uses data analytics and machine learning to offer a series of relevant and timely communications via text, email and phone call. From the PrescribeWellness platform’s patient engagement center, pharmacists can see which patients are having the most impact on their Star ratings and immediately develop an action plan.

The company said that pharmacies with PharmacyGrowth average a 4.4 Star network score, and average 15% higher customer ratings than those that don’t. Additionally, pharmacies using PharmacyGrowth had annual prescription volume right times greater than the national average for community pharmacies in 2016. 

“As a patient-centric pharmacy, you need tools to help you identify and support all of a patient’s health care needs, and our new data shows that PharmacyGrowth is a powerful and effective tool for community pharmacies to communicate and engage with their patients,” PrescribeWellness patient communications manager Perry Reed said. “Not only does it help patients stay compliant and on their medications for better health, but it also drives refills, prescription volume, loyalty and repeat business.”

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