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April 15, 2011

Today’s issue is brought to you by The AIS Report on Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans, a hard-hitting independent monthly newsletter on new products, market share, strategies, conversions, financing, profitability and strategic alliances of BC/BS plans. (Not affiliated with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association or its member companies.)

Today's Featured Story

Primary Care Physicians Are Eager to Participate In CareFirst’s PCMH Program
Reprinted from The AIS Report on Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans

A patient-centered medical home (PCMH) program that’s been introduced in the mid-Atlantic region has the physician community hopeful it could serve as a model for future endeavors and help ensure the solvency of the primary care field .... Read Full Story


From the AIS Blogs

Rx Shortages Tripled Over Past Five Years

Stories of critical drug shortages are popping up with disturbing frequency in the mainstream press, including in the pages of the Chicago Tribune, USA Today and The Wall Street Journal. The surge in shortages prompted a report by the Premier healthcare alliance, a health-care research firm founded and owned by health systems ... Read more


Quote of the Day

“I believe this type of contract [similar to the outcomes-based specialty drug contract CIGNA signed with EMD Serono, Inc.] will be a trend on a go-forward basis. One of the most significant ways to cut down on health care costs is to adopt evidence-based medicine.”

— Dan Haron, president of CIGNA Pharmacy Management, told AIS’s Specialty Pharmacy News.

Click here to read the SPECIALTY PHARMACY NEWS article in which this quote appeared. (Free for SPN subscribers; $17 for non-subscribers).


Today's Datapoint

8.3% … was the annual increase between 2006 and 2010 in the price of commonly used brand-name drugs, while prices for 45 generic drugs decreased at an average annual rate of 2.6%, according to a new report issued by the Government Accountability Office.



Today from Washington

People on the Move

Raptor Pharmaceutical Corp. named Kathlene Powell vice president of quality operations. Powell was vice president of quality at Pacific BioDevelopment, LLC....The Medical Group Management Association announced that Patrick Smith Jr., will retire as senior vice president of government affairs, effective July 1. Anders Gilberg has been promoted to replace Smith. Gillberg was vice president for public and private economic affairs.


Today's Featured Health Business Job Opening

Blue Shield of California
Regional Medical Director
El Segundo, Irvine, Los Angeles, Ontario, Woodland Hills, Long Beach, Costa Mesa, Calif.

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Upcoming Webinars

Outcomes-Based Contracts: Innovative Payer Deals to Improve Member Health and the Bottom Line
Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Click here for details.

Setting Out-of-Network UCR Rates: Evaluating FAIR Health’s New Benchmark Data and Other Alternatives for Insurers and Employers
Thursday, April 21, 2011

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New ACO Regulations: Discover the Opportunities and Pitfalls Ahead
Thursday, May 5, 2011

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Medicare Advantage Marketing for 2012: Steps to Take Now to Succeed Amid Reform-Driven Changes
Tuesday, May 10, 2011

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Payer Strategies to Manage High-Cost Specialty Drugs That Will Hit the Market Soon
Thursday, May 12, 2011

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Specialty Pharmacy Stakeholders, Strategies and Markets 2011
AIS's Health Business Daily