Prime Therapeutics launches MedDrive™, a first-of-its kind medical drug management program uniquely aligned with its Blue Plan clients

MedDrive to tackle the toughest challenges facing growing medical Rx drug spend, harness the multi-billion-dollar potential savings in biosimilar market

May 26, 2021

EAGAN, Minn. – Today, Prime Therapeutics (Prime), a leading pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) serving nearly 33 million members across 23 Blue Plans, unveiled MedDrive™ a new medical drug management program that provides solutions to help its Blue Plan clients manage the high costs associated with medically billed drugs. With the growth of drug spend under the medical benefit, Prime believes that effective total drug management for health plans is paramount. Effective total drug management requires solutions that integrate the entire health care ecosystem through a strong collaborative model to optimize health care value. Prime designed MedDrive for this purpose by leveraging the market-leading, collective health care footprint of our Blue Plan clients and Prime’s core mission of serving our Blue Plan clients through a 100% transparent, unbiased PBM model.

“Drug prices are a major concern for many Americans. With use of high-cost specialty drugs on the rise, we must look beyond the pharmacy benefit and find new ways to better manage prices for drugs paid for on the medical benefit,” said Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina’s Vice President of Pharmacy Services, Arif Khan. “This aligned collaboration will deliver improved affordability without compromising patient outcomes.”

The MedDrive program will be launched in multiple phases. The first phase focuses on drug savings strategies through greater biosimilar drug adoption, most which are paid on the medical benefit. Other elements of the initial program include benefit designs that prefer lowest net cost non-biosimilar drugs, plus enhancements to predictive data analytics, medical sourcing opportunities, and consultation services.

“Biosimilars often have initial prices that are 15% to 35% lower than the reference products. This makes them a sustainable option that offers therapeutic benefits while helping to lower costs. But significant barriers to greater adoption remain today – including a fragmented approach to managing drugs under the medical benefit,” said Joseph Leach, MD, chief medical officer at Prime. “With MedDrive, Prime now offers a transparent, comprehensive medical drug management solution to harness the collective strength of our Blue Plan clients to drive greater adoption of biosimilars and implement other cost-saving strategies.”

“We’re eager to work with Prime and Blue Cross plans to improve the use of biosimilars and other lower cost, yet equally effective drug alternatives” said Dr. Paul Thurmes, MD, medical director of Minnesota Oncology. “Just as generics transformed the marketplace years ago, so can biosimilars. Working together the cost savings can be far reaching while still allowing us to maintain the highest quality care for our patients.”

“Our experience demonstrates that biosimilars can deliver savings while offering patients safe and effective treatments,” added Leach, who, in addition to his role as Prime’s CMO, continues his practice at Minnesota Oncology. “But to overcome existing barriers, biosimilar adoption needs to be intentional. It needs to be driven and for all parts of the system to embrace new approaches to care.”

Download MedDrive biosimilars whitepaper
Download MedDrive biosimilars infographic

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