Content about Health insurance

December 13, 2011

The unemployed and underemployed have limited access to health care and, in many cases, are putting off seeking medical care, according to the "Long-Term Unemployed Survey" released on Monday by NPR News and the Kaiser Family Foundation.

MENLO PARK, Calif. — The unemployed and underemployed have limited access to health care and, in many cases, are putting off seeking medical care, according to the "Long-Term Unemployed Survey" released on Monday by NPR News and the Kaiser Family Foundation.

When they are sick or need medical advice, the long‐term unemployed and underemployed are much more likely than those with full‐time jobs to say they rely on a hospital emergency room or that they have no usual place to go for care (39% compared with 15% of full‐time employees).

November 21, 2011

Many so-called restricted-network Medicare Part D prescription drug plans don't give adequate pharmacy access to rural residents and are deceptively marketed to patients, the National Community Pharmacists Association said Monday.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Many so-called restricted-network Medicare Part D prescription drug plans don't give adequate pharmacy access to rural residents and are deceptively marketed to patients, the National Community Pharmacists Association said Monday.

The plans include those offered by a number of national retail chains and health insurers.

November 17, 2011

MinuteClinic announced on Thursday that it has become a contracted provider with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, which provides health insurance products, services or networks to 1.2 million individuals.

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — MinuteClinic announced on Thursday that it has become a contracted provider with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, which provides health insurance products, services or networks to 1.2 million individuals.
 
Under the agreement, these individuals now will have access to 16 MinuteClinic walk-in medical clinics located inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in communities throughout the Phoenix and Tucson metropolitan areas.

November 17, 2011

EmblemHealth and Walgreens have reached an agreement that allows EmblemHealth and Connecticare members to continue to have access to the Walgreens pharmacy network in 2012, the companies announced Thursday.

NEW YORK — EmblemHealth and Walgreens have reached an agreement that allows EmblemHealth and Connecticare members to continue to have access to the Walgreens pharmacy network in 2012, the companies announced Thursday.

EmblemHealth, through its companies Group Health Incorporated and HIP Health Plan of New York, provides healthcare coverage and administrative services to approximately 2.9 million people, the company said. 

November 14, 2011

Walgreens is running the ball straight down the middle of the field in its bid to mitigate any lost Express Scripts prescriptions once the retailer is removed from that benefit manager's pharmacy network at the end of the year — and that seems increasingly likely with each passing day.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT'S IMPORTANT — Walgreens is running the ball straight down the middle of the field in its bid to mitigate any lost Express Scripts prescriptions once the retailer is removed from that benefit manager's pharmacy network at the end of the year — and that seems increasingly likely with each passing day. And if Walgreens achieves 97% to 99% of its 2011 prescription volume of 819 million prescriptons next year, as the pharmacy retailer maintains, then it will be the Chicago-based Walgreens doing an end-zone shuffle of sorts by the end of next year.

November 1, 2011

The National Community Pharmacists Association on Monday touted the benefits community pharmacies can provide for health insurance exchanges once those exchange open in 2014 in a letter addressed to the Department of Health and Human Services.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Community Pharmacists Association on Monday touted the benefits community pharmacies can provide for health insurance exchanges once those exchange open in 2014 in a letter addressed to the Department of Health and Human Services.

October 31, 2011

The National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the National Community Pharmacists Association jointly spoke out Friday against cuts to California's Medicaid program Medi-Cal, which will be retroactive to June 1.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the National Community Pharmacists Association jointly spoke out Friday against cuts to California's Medicaid program Medi-Cal, which will be retroactive to June 1.

October 27, 2011

If employers want to best manage the health and productivity of their employees, they need to continue company-sponsored health plans — that was a key message that Troyen Brennan, EVP and chief medical officer of CVS Caremark, had for attendees at the National Business Group on Health's annual meeting on Thursday.

BOSTON — If employers want to best manage the health and productivity of their employees, they need to continue company-sponsored health plans — that was a key message that Troyen Brennan, EVP and chief medical officer of CVS Caremark, had for attendees at the National Business Group on Health's annual meeting on Thursday.

September 15, 2011

The use of over-the-counter medicines as a cost savings tool is catching on, of all places, at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. — The use of over-the-counter medicines as a cost savings tool is catching on, of all places, at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. Certain plans under Medicare are utilizing a new prepaid card of sorts to allow members to pay for their OTC medicines. Medicaid administrators, meanwhile, are employing that same card to incentivize healthier behavior among its members.

August 15, 2011

It's a strategic next step in retail pharmacy, a setting that has fast evolved as the intrinsic destination for all health-related matters: health advice, self-care solutions, medication therapy management, compliance programs, acute-care services and now, if the reports turn out to be accurate, branded healthcare insurance.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT'S IMPORTANT — It's a strategic next step in retail pharmacy, a setting that has fast evolved as the intrinsic destination for all health-related matters: health advice, self-care solutions, medication therapy management, compliance programs, acute-care services and now, if the reports turn out to be accurate, branded healthcare insurance. And by the time this offering would be available in 2014, the need for affordable healthcare insurance may go well beyond the 48.6 million uninsured that exist today.

August 9, 2011

Walgreens is planning to sell health insurance as soon as this fall, CNNMoney reported Tuesday morning.

NEW YORK — Walgreens is planning to sell health insurance as soon as this fall, CNNMoney reported Tuesday morning.

Walgreens declined to comment on the matter, according to the report.

The Chicago-based pharmacy-and-more operator would sell health insurance products with different price ranges and coverage levels across its network nationwide through a private health insurance exchange, CNNMoney reported, citing people familiar with the plan.

August 4, 2011

The Alliance for Patient Care, a coalition of healthcare providers, health plans, patient advocates and others working together to protect access to care in California’s Medi-Cal (Medicaid) program, headed to Washington, D.C., to urge the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and members of Congress to reject California’s proposed cut to the state’s Medi-Cal program, according to a statement issued Wednesday by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores.

WASHINGTON — The Alliance for Patient Care, a coalition of healthcare providers, health plans, patient advocates and others working together to protect access to care in California’s Medi-Cal (Medicaid) program, headed to Washington, D.C., to urge the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and members of Congress to reject California’s proposed cut to the state’s Medi-Cal program, according to a statement issued Wednesday by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores.

August 1, 2011

New guidelines that will ensure women receive preventive health services at no additional cost were announced Monday by the Department of Health and Human Services.

WASHINGTON — New guidelines that will ensure women receive preventive health services at no additional cost were announced Monday by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Developed by the independent Institute of Medicine, the new guidelines require new health insurance plans to cover women’s preventive services, such as well-woman visits, breast-feeding support, domestic violence screening and contraception without charging a co-payment, co-insurance or a deductible.

July 27, 2011

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is producing savings for state Medicaid programs that take advantage of a provision equalizing drug rebates between managed care and fee-for-service programs, according to a fact sheet released Tuesday by the Association for Community Affiliated Plans.

WASHINGTON — The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is producing savings for state Medicaid programs that take advantage of a provision equalizing drug rebates between managed care and fee-for-service programs, according to a fact sheet released Tuesday by the Association for Community Affiliated Plans.

July 21, 2011

Take Care Health Systems, which is owned by Walgreens, has revamped its website to now provide patients with online access to estimated clinic wait times, clinical quality scores and cost of services at Take Care Clinics across the country.

CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa. — Take Care Health Systems, which is owned by Walgreens, has revamped its website to now provide patients with online access to estimated clinic wait times, clinical quality scores and cost of services at Take Care Clinics across the country.

July 12, 2011

South Dakota’s largest physician-owned health plan has adopted prior authorization automation technology from RxEOB for use across its membership, RxEOB said.

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — South Dakota’s largest physician-owned health plan has adopted prior authorization automation technology from RxEOB for use across its membership, RxEOB said.

Dakotacare will use the company’s AutoAuthRx to allow clinical pharmacists to collaborate with providers and ensure each prescription is aligned with the member’s specific benefit design and the associated evidence-based guidelines.

July 12, 2011

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Monday proposed a framework to assist states in building Affordable Insurance Exchanges, state-based competitive marketplaces where individuals and small businesses will be able to purchase affordable private health insurance.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Monday proposed a framework to assist states in building Affordable Insurance Exchanges, state-based competitive marketplaces where individuals and small businesses will be able to purchase affordable private health insurance.

June 20, 2011

In its “2010 Drug Trend Report,” Express Scripts attributed much pharmacy-related waste to patients failing to follow three simple guidelines: Take medications as prescribed, take drugs that maximize clinical benefit for the lowest price and use the safest and cheapest delivery channel.

In its “2010 Drug Trend Report,” Express Scripts attributed much pharmacy-related waste to patients failing to follow three simple guidelines: Take medications as prescribed, take drugs that maximize clinical benefit for the lowest price and use the safest and cheapest delivery channel.

June 14, 2011

Many American consumers are in favor of oral contraceptive coverage by both private and government-subsidized health insurance plans, according to a Thomson Reuters-National Press Radio Health Poll released Friday.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Many American consumers are in favor of oral contraceptive coverage by both private and government-subsidized health insurance plans, according to a Thomson Reuters-National Press Radio Health Poll released Friday.

"Our survey findings provide a benchmark for public sentiment on issues that are continually dividing lawmakers, businesspeople and healthcare professionals," said Raymond Fabius, chief medical officer at the healthcare business of Thomson Reuters.

June 3, 2011

Anyone wondering what the future of health care under a more consumer-directed model will look like got a glimpse of it from two pieces of news this week.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — Anyone wondering what the future of health care under a more consumer-directed model will look like got a glimpse of it from two pieces of news this week.

(THE NEWS: Sam’s Club celebrates men’s health with free screenings. For the full story, click here)

May 19, 2011

Adflow Health Networks announced a large-scale deployment of its consumer health platform.

FORT WASHINGTON, Pa. — Adflow Health Networks announced a large-scale deployment of its consumer health platform.

Adflow Health Networks' Personal Health Center, an interactive digital media platform, provides consumers with access to trusted healthcare content and services, together with the ability to perform a wide range of Food and Drug Administration-cleared screenings, Adflow Health said. The full-scale deployment includes implementation across retail locations, worksites and high traffic areas.

May 18, 2011

A newly launched prescription card offers discounts at more than 2,000 pharmacies in New York.

NEW YORK — A newly launched prescription card offers discounts at more than 2,000 pharmacies in New York.

May 10, 2011

The National Retail Federation announced that it is endorsing legislation that would repeal the employer mandate provision of last year’s healthcare-reform law.

WASHINGTON — The National Retail Federation announced that it is endorsing legislation that would repeal the employer mandate provision of last year’s healthcare-reform law.

April 13, 2011

The National Community Pharmacists Association on Wednesday announced support for the Quality Health Care Coalition Act of 2011 (H.R. 1409), which was introduced last week by House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. John Conyers Jr., D-Mich., and Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, in an effort to improve the quality of patient care by leveling the playing field between healthcare professionals and insurance companies in the healthcare industry.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The National Community Pharmacists Association on Wednesday announced support for the Quality Health Care Coalition Act of 2011 (H.R. 1409), which was introduced last week by House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. John Conyers Jr., D-Mich., and Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, in an effort to improve the quality of patient care by leveling the playing field between healthcare professionals and insurance companies in the healthcare industry.

February 25, 2011

Give a man a doctor’s co-pay, and he is healthy for a day. Give him a health savings account, and that man becomes so much more vested in ensuring positive health outcomes that he may be healthy for a lifetime. Because in the long run, it’s cheaper.

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT — Give a man a doctor’s co-pay, and he is healthy for a day. Give him a health savings account, and that man becomes so much more vested in ensuring positive health outcomes that he may be healthy for a lifetime. Because in the long run, it’s cheaper.

(THE NEWS: HSAs saw dramatic growth in 2010, study finds. For the full story, click here)