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Employee Involvement Is Key to Long-Term Pharmacy Cost Control, Finds Buck Consultants Survey
Date:8/13/2008

Employers plan to significantly involve their workers in long-term strategies to control prescription drug costs. This finding is among the results of a survey released today by Buck Consultants.

New York (PRWEB) August 13, 2008 -- Employers plan to significantly involve their workers in long-term strategies to control prescription drug costs. This finding is among the results of a survey released today by Buck Consultants, an ACS company and one of the world’s leading human resource and benefits consulting firms.

Buck’s study, “Understanding Your Strategies for Coping with the Changing Pharmacy Benefit Landscape,” was conducted in the first quarter of 2008. The goal of the survey was to identify strategies employers are using to manage their prescription drug benefits and costs.

“Emerging developments in the pharmaceutical industry are challenging employers to revisit their drug benefit strategy,” said Michael Jacobs, a principal at Buck Consultants. “Unprecedented availability of inexpensive generics and the emergence of new, very expensive specialty medications are two of the trends driving this strategy review.”

More than 150 organizations participated in the survey. Respondents represent a broad range of industries and employer size.

Current State of Affairs

Essentially all (99%) respondents provide prescription drug coverage as part of their health care program for active employees. The two reasons given as most important for providing this coverage are the health of employees and business competitiveness.

Fifty-one percent of respondents use employee cost sharing as a utilization management tool. The most common cost-sharing range is 21 percent to 30 percent (used by 44 percent of respondents).

“While the cost of prescription drug coverage varies widely, more than one-third (
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