Navigation Links
Thomson Reuters Study Finds Step Therapy Programs May Increase Overall Healthcare Costs for Employers
Date:3/30/2009

ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 30 /PRNewswire/ -- A health insurance protocol intended to promote the use of effective, cheaper medications may create barriers that lead people to receive less of needed medications, according to a Thomson Reuters study. As a result, patients ultimately require more -- and more costly -- medical care.

The protocol, called "step therapy," requires health plan members to try a first-line medication before they can receive coverage for a second-line medication. (Step therapy is not the same as programs which encourage the substitution of a generic medication for the same brand name medication. Step therapy requires certain types of medications within a class of drugs to be used before a second-line medication is tried, unless a physician obtains prior authorization.)

In the study, a group of patients treated for hypertension under a step therapy program filled prescriptions for less anti-hypertensive medication -- by 7.9 percent -- than a comparison group with no step therapy requirement. The step therapy group also had 3.1 percent lower drug costs. (These effects declined in each subsequent quarter.)

As drug utilization declined, hospital admissions and emergency room visits increased. Two years after the step therapy provision was implemented, the step therapy patients incurred $99 more in healthcare costs per quarter, on average, than the comparison group.

"Under step therapy, patients who are newly prescribed a second-line medication may be denied coverage -- unless their doctor obtains prior approval from the health plan or changes the prescription to a first-line drug," said Tami L. Mark, the study's lead author and a research director in the Healthcare business of Thomson Reuters. "Patients who are unwilling to switch or unable to overcome administrative hurdles may go without medication. That may cause their medical condition to deteriorate and increase their need for medical interventions in the future.

"If that happens, it can wipe out savings derived from step therapy," Mark said. "Further research is needed to understand why these unintended consequences may happen and how they might be avoided."

The study, sponsored by Pfizer, Inc., was published in the February issue of The American Journal of Managed Care. Researchers analyzed insurance claims for 11,851 people with employer-sponsored health coverage that incorporated a step therapy protocol for antihypertensive drugs. Their use of healthcare services was compared with a group of 30,882 antihypertensive drug users who did not participate in a step therapy program.

About Thomson Reuters

The Healthcare business of Thomson Reuters produces insights, information, benchmarks and analysis that enable organizations to manage costs, improve performance and enhance the quality of healthcare. Thomson Reuters is the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. We combine industry expertise with innovative technology to deliver critical information to leading decision makers in the financial, legal, tax and accounting, scientific, healthcare and media markets, powered by the world's most trusted news organization. With headquarters in New York and major operations in London and Eagan, Minnesota, Thomson Reuters employs more than 50,000 people in 93 countries. Thomson Reuters shares are listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: TRI); Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: TRI); London Stock Exchange (LSE: TRIL); and Nasdaq (Nasdaq: TRIN). For more information, go to www.thomsonreuters.com.


'/>"/>
SOURCE Thomson Reuters
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Thomson Reuters Announces 100 Top Hospitals Award Winners
2. Shands HealthCare Selects Micromedex CareNotes System from Thomson Reuters to Improve Patient Education
3. Thomson Reuters Publishes Pharma Matters White Paper, The Five Myths of Generic Competition
4. Thomson Reuters Study Tracks Impact of Recession on Hospitals
5. VHA Selects Clinical Xpert from Thomson Reuters as its Preferred Solution for Mobile Clinical Improvement Systems
6. Molecular Oncology accepted into Thomson Reuters index
7. Thomson Reuters Releases 2009 Patent Focus Report
8. Kids and Their Families Are Hit Hardest During Flu Season, According to Thomson Reuters Study
9. Thomson Reuters Launches Liquent PublishPerfect(TM)
10. CMS Selects Thomson Reuters to Help Implement Medicare Medical Home Demonstration Project for Medicare Recipients
11. Thomson Reuters Installs Clinical Xpert at Catholic Healthcare West for HIS Downtime Solution
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/22/2017)... Los Angeles, California (PRWEB) , ... March 22, 2017 , ... ... has signed British boxing champ Ashley Theophane as a new Brand Ambassador. Theophane, who ... the British light welterweight title in 2011. He has racked up an impressive number ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... ... March 22, 2017 , ... ... that its digital marketing solutions have enabled Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters ... , Recognizing the value of a digital marketing approach, the 206-bed pediatric ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... ... March 22, 2017 , ... The Burke Medical Research Institute ... advances in basic neuroscience at the BMRI labs into new and improved treatments ... movement, vision, and cognition impaired by stroke, traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, and ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... ... March 22, 2017 , ... The Vanderbeck Agency, a ... greater Nassau County region, is embarking on a combined charity effort with the Great ... For the last 25 years, the Great Neck Breast Cancer Coalition has worked to ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... March 22, 2017 , ... Chris Humphrey ... to families and business professionals throughout the coastal plains region, is initiating a charity ... overcome cancer. , Dillyn was first diagnosed with leukemia on a Friday evening in ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/22/2017)... , 22. März 2017   VWR ... weltweit tätige Anbieter von Produkten und Dienstleistungen ... Erwerb von EPL Archives Inc. bekannt, eines ... Kunden im kompletten Zyklus regulierter Forschung, Entwicklung ... Proben, Speicherung von Dokumenten und Zusatzdienstleistungen zur ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... March 22, 2017  Applied BioMath ( www.appliedbiomath.com ... drug research and development, today announced the latest ... Day 2017 is a day full of presentations, ... pharmacology (QSP) community. The focus is to learn ... and accelerating drug research and development. ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... March 22, 2017 National Medical Products ... received an Innovative Technology contract from Vizient, ... in the country. The contract was based on ... with expertise in this category who serve on ... Technology contracts for technologies that demonstrate an ability ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: