Monthly Archives: July 2019

South Carolina Blues switch to Optum

Beginning Jan. 1, 2020, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina‘s pharmacy benefit will be administered by OptumRx.

There will be little or no effect on most members from this change. However, there are a few updates to BlueCross’ prescription drug coverage for 2020:

  •  ID Cards: All members will receive a new ID card in December to replace their current one. Members should be sure to show their new card at the pharmacy when they have their first prescription filled in 2020. Members can always access the most up-to-date version of their ID card by logging in to My Health Toolkit (on the web or via the app).
     
  •  Mail-Service Pharmacy: Beginning Jan. 1, mail-service will be provided by OptumRx Home Delivery. Most current mail-service prescriptions will automatically transfer. Members with mail-service prescriptions will receive a letter from BlueCross in November with more information.  
     
  • Specialty Pharmacy: Also beginning Jan. 1, BriovaRx will be BlueCross’ new preferred specialty pharmacy. Members who currently use a specialty drug purchased through CVS Specialty Pharmacy will have their prescription automatically transfer to the new specialty pharmacy. All members affected by this change will receive a letter from BlueCross in mid-November with more information. 

 As part of their health plan’s regular pharmacy benefit updates, some members may also experience changes to their prescription drug coverage on Jan. 1, 2020. Any member, who is currently taking a drug that will be affected by changes taking effect on Jan. 1, will be sent a letter in mid-October describing the change and any actions needed.

Future 2- Do your own blood test!

LabCorp, one of the largest clinical laboratory companies in the world, is now giving consumers the option to order their own blood tests online as it positions itself for a major expansion of brick-and-mortar testing sites in Walgreens stores.   

The company announced the new offering July 22 as an expansion of its “Pixel” platform. Pixel was launched last October with self-directed test kits, which allow people to screen themselves at home for colorectal cancer, diabetes risk and lipid panels.  

LabCorp’s newest offering allows consumers to go online and choose from 25 different test packages, which collectively cover 90 different lab tests. Test packages are targeted at various systems like thyroid health, kidney health and women’s health. After consumers buy a package, they can visit a LabCorp location for a phlebotomist to collect a blood sample, and they then receive test results within a week through an online portal. LabCorp operates testing sites at 41 Walgreens stores and plans to expand to more than 600 Walgreens locations by 2022. LabCorp currently has a total of nearly 2,000 patient service sites.

Want to know how much? Click here for the article.

Future of Healthcare?

I watched the first Democratic debate last evening, and the section on healthcare very carefully. Clearly the intention of the Democratic party is generally to head towards single payor/socialized medicine.

Whether we end up there or not, forced Telemedicine may play a big role going forward. ” The internet makes it possible for specialists on the other side of the globe to participate in complex, delicate surgeries, as well as for surgeons to examine patients being treated by paramedics in an ambulance or on a living room floor. For the article click here.

Would you take unlimited 24/7 access to primary care doctors via smartphone, tablet or computer, with zero out-of-pocket co-pays, if it meant you’d have to pay a lot more money to see your regular doctor in person?”

Lets take this to the next level.

You’ve had a tennis accident and suspect the worst: a broken leg.

A telemedicine doctor-on-demand confirms your fears: You need to see a physician in person. From your phone, you nab an Uber Health ride (HIPAA-safe, affordable and reliable) covered by your CVS/Aetna health plan. 

At a state-of-the-art medical mall, the wait for an X-ray is short. You barely have time to pull out your iPhone and find your secure MyChart health records—data that are owned by you, but protected by blockchain.

Like clockwork, the radiologist’s report appears in the app, an orthopedist casts your leg and you schedule both your follow-up and physical therapy appointments then and there.

Sound like the faraway future? Think again. Healthcare is on the cusp of a technology revolution. Technology is primed to disrupt healthcare more explosively than it has any other industry.


Lower Drug Costs on High Deductible Health Plans

Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury gave health insurers more flexibility to cover the cost of certain medications and tests for people with common chronic conditions who are enrolled in many high-deductible health plans.

The rule will allow those with HSAs attached to a High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) to get some drugs covering chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes, depression and high cholesterol before meeting their deductible.

For the full article click here.

House repeals ACA’s cadillac tax

Finally, this poorly conceived rules seems to be going away. Now for the senate. Click here for the full article.

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Reeve Conover is a Registered Representative. Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a Broker/dealer member FINRA/SPIC. Cambridge and Conover Consulting are not affiliated. Licensed in SC, NC, NY, CT, NJ, and CA.
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