Be Prepared: New Wave of Costly Rx Claims on the Horizon

Be Prepared: New Wave of Costly Rx Claims on the Horizon

If recent events have taught us anything, it is to be prepared for the unexpected. While none of us could have fully predicted the dramatic impact of COVID-19 on our families, organizations, and the world economy, hindsight reveals safeguards we might have put in place to lessen the damage.

Ironically, this is a subject I had been wrestling with well before the coronavirus was receiving any attention from the international media. Those of you who follow our firm’s work know we have long been concerned about the growing economic threat posed by rising specialty drug costs to employer-funded health plans and their members. It actually dates back to 2005, when I first learned about a $125,000 oncology drug that didn’t save lives. On average, it only extended life by less than two months of sub-optimal living. (more…)

All is Not Well: Survey Reveals Some Disconnect

All is Not Well: Survey Reveals Some Disconnect

We recently conducted a survey of Ohio employers, posing questions about their wellbeing programs. Participants were asked to rate their company’s actual performance compared to their desired performance in fourteen categories on a five-point scale. (more…)

You’ve Been Warned: This is Not a Drill

You’ve Been Warned: This is Not a Drill

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed any number of shortcomings in our readiness to face a healthcare-related crisis, and our handling of HIPAA privacy and security rules in the workplace is certainly one of them. Unfortunately, it didn’t require a global emergency to know that all too many organizations are falling woefully short when it comes to having adequate HIPAA plans and procedures in place. (more…)

Necessity is the Mother of Invention… and Progress

Necessity is the Mother of Invention… and Progress

COVID-19 safety concerns have redefined “normal” for countless aspects of our lives and nowhere is that more apparent than healthcare. Some things, like discretionary testing and surgeries, will probably return to the pre-corona standard. But others (think telehealth visits) have achieved a new level of acceptance and may become the standard of care in many situations. (more…)

What’s the Rush?

What’s the Rush?

 “The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for protecting the public health by ensuring the safety, efficacy, and security of drugs, biological products, and medical devices.” It’s right there in their job description.

But with the release of new policies meant to promote innovation for patients with unmet clinical needs, the FDA is asking the American people to “accept some level of uncertainty” when it comes to a handful of gene therapies that have been fast-tracked through the approval process. (more…)

In Search of Healthy Competition

In Search of Healthy Competition

There was a recent article in a North Carolina newspaper about a local surgeon, Dr. Gajendra Singh, who wanted to offer transparently priced, low-cost services to assist patients that are candidates for general or laparoscopic surgeries.

What was fascinating about the article wasn’t that the surgeon was still practicing independently (which seems very rare these days), or that he posts the cost of an x-ray on his front door (which is also rare, and admirable). The intriguing part was that he wanted to purchase an MRI machine and the State of North Carolina wouldn’t permit it. (more…)