Would You Pay $100 To Be Told To Take Your Rx?

We know adherence is a serious issue that drives healthcare costs.  And, as I have talked about a little here and a lot with many of our pharmacy clients, it’s not a simple issue.  People aren’t adherent for a variety of reasons – cost, side effects, health literacy, or simply just forgetting (among others).

There are lots of tools out there to help you organize your medications and manage them.  Whose job is it to help you – yours, your physicians, your managed care company, your pharmacy, your pharmacy benefit manager?  Obviously, you (the patient) have the primary responsibility.  After that, your pharmacy is best positioned to help you with this.  But, the managed care company stands to benefit the most by preventing serious medical conditions associated with non-compliance.

So, I was a little surprised to see a new company come up that offers to send you calls, e-mails, or text messages to remind you to take your medications.  And, you can even talk to a pharmacist.

Let’s break this down:

  • Whatever pharmacy you use (mail, retail, specialty) will offer you consultation with a pharmacist for free.
  • I believe most pharmacy benefit management (PBM) companies offer automated e-mail reminders that you set up yourself off their website for free.

I don’t know why I as a consumer would pay for this.  And, it seems pretty high for a managed care charge.  If I went to a client of ours and told them I would send messages to patients for $100 PMPY (per member per year), I think they would choke on that price tag.

So, will it work??  Who knows?  I have been surprised by business models before.

3 Responses to “Would You Pay $100 To Be Told To Take Your Rx?”

  1. Dear George,

    Thank you for your recent post about InnovationRx. It is clear from reading your blog that you have a keen interest in improving health care. I would, however, like to clarify your description of the service InnovationRx provides.

    Reminders to take medication are just a small component of the adherence solution that InnovationRx provides. We approach our business in the spirit of disease management and have crafted a unique and comprehensive program. Our service includes:
    • A complete drug encyclopedia
    • A drug-to-drug interaction tool
    • A drug-to-food interaction tool
    • A drug identifier
    • A generic drug alternative
    • A symptom diary
    • An adherence report

    In order to identify why a patient is non-adherent and then successfully intervene, you must first assess the specific reasons for a patient’s non-adherence. We do this by administering an adherence assessment that was designed in a research grant partnership with clinicians at Northeastern University’s School of Pharmacy and gives customers the ability to target the underlying issues causing non-adherence. The assessment produces a non-adherence risk score that enables triage and intervention.

    You wrote, “Whatever pharmacy you use…will offer you consultation with a pharmacist for free.” Perhaps…But our pharmacists are trained in motivational interviewing and adherence intervention to provide patients with personalized, one-to-one support, and they integrate the tools we provide in our web service in the course of the consultation. Whether the adherence issue is behavioral, motivational, cognitive or another issue that is preventing a patient from taking their medication, our pharmacists can help them to overcome their adherence obstacles identified by our adherence assessment. You will not find this at any pharmacy.

    For our corporate clients, InnovationRx provides a data-mining tool to analyze and dissect the outcomes data generated by our program. This tool features a robust analytics engine fueled by configurable business rules and leading practice performance indicators. InnovationRx can identify and target specific constituencies within patient groups for special, customized education and care to reduce non-adherence, reduce excessive health care costs and problems.

    InnovationRx is a comprehensive, ROI-driven solution to a health care problem that is costing our country in excess of $177 Billion a year.

    I hope I have clarified the services InnovationRx provides. I enjoy reading your blog and I hope you continue your work as you are addressing some important issues in health care. Thank you.

    Sean D. Teare
    President, InnovationRx

  2. George,
    I enjoyed reading your post. This topic alone can open a discussion that is endless into the issues of managed care and PBM’s and Non Compliance as well as who is running who when it comes to caring for patients.
    Non Compliance is costing Managed care $100 Billion dollars a year. This is by way of extra doctor visits, hospitalization, mismanaged medications end more.
    The involvement of PBMs into dispensing medications is not helping this issue as they have no significant benefit for increasing, improving or even maintaining compliance.
    Great post and I look forward to reading more

  3. Can you identify the company providing the reminder/adherence service?

    [The company is InnovationRx. – George]

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