High-Cost Medications: Can Employers Flip the Script?

Flip the Script Blog Image
Flip the Script Blog Image

Upcoming event to discuss factors impacting the cost of medications

High-cost medications continue to be a hot topic affecting organizations across the U.S. Legislation has been proposed or passed in many states and there’s been public discussion and a great deal of speculation on the issue — including efforts to figure out who’s to blame.

For 85 percent of employers, pharmacy pricing is their predominant concern going into 2020, according to a study by the National Business Group on Health (NBGH). Regardless of where the monetary transactions occur across the pharmaceutical supply chain, public and private employers alike are struggling with this issue and searching for solutions as they feel the financial burden on their bottom lines.

Wouldn’t it be great if employers could “flip the script” by making just a few adjustments to their health or pharmacy benefits plans to reduce the impact? Unfortunately, it’s not quite that easy and there are many factors beyond their control.’

Employer Solutions

However, Jim Harenberg, vice president of Strategic Solutions at Apex Benefits and leader of the ApexRx Pharmacy Benefits Program, says there are actions employers can take now to gain greater control and make a difference for their employees. For those who are unsure where to begin, Harenberg recommends getting started by becoming more educated on the topic and developing a proactive plan.

“It’s anticipated that 30 to 35 high-cost specialty medications will be approved by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) each year for the next several years,” Harenberg states. “With some of these drugs expected to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars per year and potentially millions of dollars per treatment, employer education and thoughtful planning are immensely important.”

He adds, “Just one unexpected diagnosis resulting in a high-cost drug therapy can wreak absolute havoc on an employer’s finances. Employers must consider their options before disruption occurs.”

High Cost of Medication Event

Business owners, executives and Human Resource professionals who want to provide the best health benefits to employees at the most affordable costs are invited to attend an upcoming free educational event, “A Prescription for Managing the Impact of High Cost Medications,” on November 13, 2019.

This event is a good opportunity to start getting better informed as attendees will hear directly from industry experts from Eli Lilly and Company, Cigna/Express Scripts and Apex Benefits. Practical solutions to manage the costs of today’s large claims and mitigate future financial risks also will be discussed.

Learn more and register here.

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