The Business Group Blog was created to share and discuss information about challenges and solutions to the health care benefits issues that large employers face today and tomorrow — such as controlling health care costs, reforming the health care delivery system, and engaging employees in their health and benefits — and will provide insight into national health policy issues. We hope you find this information useful and will consider subscribing to the blog and sharing any thoughts or ideas with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are 9 item(s) tagged with the keyword "cost control".
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The Business Group is pleased to roll out a Public Policy Issue Brief that offers public policy recommendations to create a more favorable environment for financial sustainability and affordability of specialty medications. At the outset, understanding the challenge is important. With specialty drug expenditures trending at an all-time high and all indicators pointing to sustained increases over time, employers are strategizing on how best to manage growing pharmacy expenditures for this subset of drugs.
It’s important that a governance structure for benefits be in sync with the overall mission and goals of a company. What is at stake, among other things, is a company's fiscal health. Employers want to secure their employees’ health and well-being consistently across their operations in different local and global markets.
Patient (or “copay”) assistance programs and coupons present a bit of a double-edged sword. While they help facilitate payment for certain drugs, they also complicate the payment process immensely. Both help patients ultimately gain access to expensive drugs that otherwise may not be affordable. However, the intention behind each approach differs considerably, as does the overall impact.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) launched the Health Care Payment and Learning and Action Network (LAN) in 2015 to align stakeholders across sectors in moving payment from traditional fee-for-service (FFS) methods to one linked to quality via alternative payment models (APMs). The LAN is an unprecedented collaboration of stakeholders from the private, public, and non-profit sectors whose goal is to transform the nation’s health system by supporting health care value over volume.
Each January, more than 100 human resources and benefits professionals come together for our annual Employers’ Summit on Health Care Costs and Solutions. The best practices and cutting-edge ideas brought forward at this event continue to show that innovation in health improvement and health care management in this country is driven largely by employers.
Close to a quarter of large employers (24%) plan to actively promote accountable care organizations (ACOs) in 2017. ACOs consist of health care providers that are creating a delivery model that ultimately accepts responsibility for the quality and cost of care for a defined population. However, it is not always clear how ACOs differentiate from the market or how they are consistently achieving initial contract goals and reducing costs. A common question employers ask is, “Is an ACO right for my company?”
Are you struggling with managing specialty pharmacy in plan design? Our new Specialty Pharmacy Management Checklist provides detailed tips for staying ahead of the curve – from utilization management to reporting and accountability to employee education.
Here are some tips from the checklist:
Controlling health benefits costs remains a high priority for large employers. While increases are expected to hold steady at 6% in 2017, costs are still running at more than twice the rate of inflation and general wage increases, thereby threatening affordability.
For the first time in 2010, the number of specialty drugs approved by the FDA surpassed that of traditional drugs, kick-starting a trend that we're continuing to see year after year. While only a small fraction (approx. 4%) of the patient population uses specialty medications, these costly drugs now account for 25% of total US drug spending and is the fastest growing cost in most employers' health benefits.
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