LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Pharmacy/physician collaborative practice models may have just gotten a shot in the arm with the announcement Thursday morning that Humana, which will cover a projected 13.1 million lives following its acquisition by Aetna, will be launching a real-time prescription drug benefit service that gives doctors information about their Humana patients’ drug coverage, pricing and network pharmacy options all while the patient is in the exam room.
Delivered to physicians through DrFirst’s myBenefitCheck, the IntelligentRx service provides doctors with patient-specific prescription price information at the time the prescription is being written. The service is expected to reduce the impact of cost on medication access and adherence by helping doctors and patients consider medication cost as part of their drug therapy regimen, the company said.
DrFirst’s medication management technology is integrated with the electronic medical records used by many doctors during patient visits. When a doctor chooses a medication to prescribe, they are presented with information from Humana through DrFirst’s e-prescribing interface, including drug coverage and cost, potential alternative therapies and nearby retail pharmacies and mail order pharmacies in the patient’s network. Drug and allergy alerts are also presented during e-prescribing, helping reduce potential adverse drug events.
Humana Pharmacy president William Fleming says helping doctors make more informed prescribing decisions is key to medication access and adherence, and therefore critical to improving clinical outcomes.
“This is a big step forward in closing the gaps in the health care system, using transparency and technology to create a better health care experience,” Fleming said. “Real-time information provided by the IntelligentRx service is a perfect example of how we can help doctors proactively deliver better care, more affordably, to their patients.”
“The cost of medications is a known contributor to patient medication non-adherence,” DrFirst president Cameron Deemer said. “With myBenefitCheck, it’s as if the doctor is going along with the patient to the pharmacy, helping to select the best medication and pharmacy for patients based on their prescription drug coverage. This technology helps doctors choose the best course of action to support medication adherence and patient outcomes.”