AIS's Health Business Daily
Strategic Business News from Experienced Health Care Reporters
at Atlantic Information Services, Inc.
Health Plan Week
Today’s issue is brought to you by AIS's Health Plan Week, the industry's leading source of objective business, financial and regulatory news of the health insurance industry.

October 22, 2014

Today's Featured Story

Wal-Mart Turns to Brokers for Expansion Into Health Plan Trade
Reprinted from Health Plan Week

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. on Oct. 6 unveiled a program that calls for brokers affiliated with Tranzact subsidiary DirectHealth.com to offer 2015 individual plans on and off public exchanges and Medicare plans at 2,700 of its 4,311 U.S. stores, on the phone or online. The retailer is already active in the sector, via deals with carriers like Humana Inc. and their co-branded Humana-Walmart Medicare Prescription Drug Plans. But this new venture deepens its ties, and is a bid to outpace CVS Health and Walgreen Co. as the drug chains consider insurance options to complement a growing stable of in-store clinical care outlets, market consultants say.... Read Full Story

 

From the AIS Blogs

Six Spooky Statistics About Specialty Pharmacy Costs

Halloween is hands-down my favorite holiday. I love a good horror movie and an even scarier costume. When it comes to health care, one thing that continues to give payers a fright is the rising cost of specialty pharmaceuticals. At a reported $1,125 a pill, the newly approved hepatitis C treatment Harvoni has payers seeing red.... Read more

 

Quote of the Day

“We embrace new technology as long as it adds value to the system in terms of quality improvement, customer experience, and/or cost effectiveness. New technology that simply adds cost without improving quality, health, satisfaction and productivity is counter to our triple aim goals. Our payment models are based on improving value, not cost reduction by itself.”

— Cigna Corp.’s national medical director, Scott Josephs, M.D., told AIS’s Health Plan Week.

Click here to read the HEALTH PLAN WEEK article in which this quote appeared. (Free for HPW subscribers; $17 for non-subscribers).

 

Today's Datapoint

98% ... of Medicare Advantage plan enrollees in 2012 stayed in the program, according to a new study by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC).

Click here to read the MEDICARE ADVANTAGE NEWS article in which this datapoint appeared. (Free for MAN subscribers; $17 for non-subscribers).

 

Today from Washington

People on the Move

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey appointed Minal Patel, M.D., senior vice president and chief strategy officer. Patel was most recently executive vice president of iHealth Technologies....PruittHealth named Daniel Wyman, M.D., chief medical officer. He was previously air combat command chief medical officer and command surgeon for the U.S. Air Force....Medbox, Inc. appointed Doug Mitchell chief financial officer. He was previously CFO for Chicago Pizza & Brewery, now known as BJ’s Restaurants, Inc....Michael Giske joined Epic Sciences as chief information officer. He was most recently director of IT strategy and architecture at Oracle Corp.

 

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