PBMs: Cynics patrol

Late last month Jack Bruner joined PBM Caremark Rx as VP of Marketing. What was he doing before? He was head of Hewitt’s Global Health Care Practice. Who’s Hewitt? It’s one of the biggest benefit consultants in the world. What did it do last year? It tried to put together a coalition of  coalition of employers (HR Policy Association) to go around the PBMs. It basically appears to be failing.

How hard did it try, and on whose side is it (and the other benefits consultants) really on? I’ll let you Wall Street Journal readers decide if you’re suspicious of a revolving door between the consultants and the PBMs.

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3 replies »

  1. During my research of my insurance issue, I came across a company that I thought was interesting. It just hit me that it is a PBM. Their website points out that they are different because they are run by pharmacists and not owned by a pharmaceutical company. What they conveniently leave out is that they are owned by UnitedHealth Group.
    Prescription Solutions
    Prescription Solutions was founded in 1993 by pharmacists for managed care. Pharmacists still lead our company. This gives us a rather unique point-of-view in our industry. We recognize the treatment value of prescription medications. Our goal is not to limit prescription use, but to increase the appropriate use of prescription medications. Getting the right medication to the right person at the right time is the best approach for everyone concerned.
    We’re not owned by a pharmaceutical company, so we operate independently, able to focus solely on the needs of our clients and plan members. More than five million people turn to Prescription Solutions for their pharmacy and medical management needs. We’re committed to ensuring their safety – through our drug interaction, allergy and formal drug review processes – and the quality of their care – by educating them and their doctors about the best use of medications. We look forward to working with you to make the most of your pharmacy benefits.

  2. SBD
    Actually the Pharma companies that used to own PBMs have all long since sold them This has nothing to do with pharma manufacturers, even though you are correct to say that they have managed the PBMs very well.

  3. Maybe this is all just to shady for me to understand, but why would the Big Pharma Companies want to eliminate the PMB when at least two of them own one?
    According the the FTC Eli Lilly owns PCS and Merck owns Medco. I wonder who owns CareMark and Express Scripts?