CVS Health Research Institute study reveals medication adherence interventions on patients with common chronic conditions is extraordinarily cost-effective

WOONSOCKET, R.I., 2016-Aug-23 — /EPR Retail News/ — A new study from the CVS Health Research Institute found that interventions to keep patients with common chronic conditions adherent is extraordinarily cost-effective. The study, published today in The American Journal of Managed Care, also found an even greater opportunity for cost-savings if medication adherence resources are focused on patients with three or more chronic co-morbidities, such as hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol. In fact, a preliminary analysis shows that payers could save approximately $38-$63 million per 100,000 members by focusing resources on these specific patient populations.

“There is extensive evidence supporting the relationship between better adherence, improved health outcomes and reduced health care costs, but efforts to improve medication adherence, while effective, can be costly,” said Troyen A. Brennan, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of CVS Health. “We are now trying to better understand how to maximize health care resources to have the greatest impact on adherence and provide the maximum benefit for payers and patients. This research indicates that targeting adherence interventions to patients based upon their adherence history and co-morbidities would result in greater cost-savings and a better use of health care resources.”

Researchers reviewed de-identified medical and pharmacy claims data of more than 1.2 million patients with at least one of three chronic diseases, including diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol, over a two year period. The study found that the best strategy was to focus on the patients who are adherent and keep them adherent. For example, a patient with hypertension who was initially adherent, but became non-adherent, spent an additional $2,663 on medical care. In addition, the researchers found that the number of co-morbid conditions directly influenced the magnitude of cost savings when adherence behavior improved. In fact, patients with three or more chronic conditions had up to seven times greater savings than patients with one or two conditions.

“Short-term changes in adherence can have a meaningful and immediate impact on health care costs, and this kind of research is important in helping our clients understand the value of medication adherence and where the greatest cost-savings opportunities exist for their member populations when it comes to maintaining medication adherence,” said Jonathan Roberts, President of CVS Caremark, the pharmacy benefits manager (PBM) of CVS Health. “We have a number of analytic tools that we use with our clients and offer adherence programs tailored for specific member populations to help improve health outcomes and deliver significant value for our clients.”

At CVS Health, we leverage our analytic expertise across the enterprise to help PBM clients tailor and implement adherence interventions that have the greatest impact. For example, we use predictive analytics to help understand which patients are likely to be non-adherent and as a result, the most costly. In addition, we work with clients to target certain member populations who can most benefit from our adherence programs. In fact, we recently launched Care 1-on-1 , which connects members with multiple chronic conditions to a dedicated Pharmacy Care Team who is available 24/7 to support individual member needs, coordinate medication delivery and address their adherence challenges.

The CVS Health Research Institute is focused on contributing to the body of scientific knowledge related to pharmacy and health care through research collaborations with external academic institutions, participation in federally-funded research, analysis and sharing of CVS Health data sources and coordination of pilot programs and initiatives. CVS Health Research Institute findings support a continuous quality improvement environment, which encourages product innovation and development to benefit CVS Health patients, clients and their members.

About CVS Health
CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 9,600 retail pharmacies, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with nearly 80 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, the Company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contacts:
Christine Cramer
CVS Health
(401) 770-3317
christine.cramer@cvshealth.com

SOURCE: CVS Health

CVS/pharmacy® ReadyFill® program improves medication adherence while reducing drug waste – CVS Health Research Institute

Findings show that CVS/pharmacy® ReadyFill® program improves medication adherence while reducing drug waste

WOONSOCKET, R.I., 2015-11-16 — /EPR Retail News/ — New research by the CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) Research Institute is the first to show the impact of prescription refill programs on medication adherence. The study, published in the American Journal of Managed Care, found that ReadyFill®, the refill program available at CVS/pharmacy®, improved adherence to medications for common chronic conditions without contributing to an oversupply of medication.

“Medication adherence is a complex public health challenge, and our ongoing research in this area has identified many reasons why people don’t always take their medications as prescribed by their doctor,” said William H. Shrank, MD, MSHS, senior vice president and Chief Scientific Officer, CVS Health. “At CVS Health, we are pleased to show that our prescription refill program is helping to address one challenge of medication adherence by making the prescription refill process easier and more convenient without contributing to drug oversupply, which is a common concern with these types of programs.”

The study found that patients who chose to enroll in the refill program offered by CVS/pharmacy had significantly greater medication adherence. In fact, those enrolled in the program receiving 30-day supplies of medication had a Medication Possession Ratio (MPR), a measurement for medication adherence, that was three points higher than the control group. For those patients receiving 90-day supplies of chronic medications, their MPR was 1.4 points higher than the control group. In addition, those enrolled in the refill program who received 30-day fills had 2.5 fewer days of oversupply than those in the control group, and those receiving 90-day fills had 2.18 fewer days of oversupply.

“We created the ReadyFill program to help encourage adherence by providing customers with easy access to an appropriate and adequate medication supply,” added Joshua M. Flum, executive vice president of Pharmacy Services, CVS Health. “At CVS Health, we are committed to helping more people start and stay on their prescriptions every day, and ReadyFill is just one of several adherence services that we offer to help improve health outcomes and reduce total health care costs.”

The study evaluated integrated data of more than 250,000 CVS/caremark members who filled 30- or 90-day prescriptions for at least one of 11 common chronic conditions at a CVS/pharmacy. The researchers compared MPR and average days of excess medication on hand at the time of refill for a sample of members who chose to enroll in the CVS/pharmacy refill program to a control sample that filled prescriptions using traditional methods.

CVS Health launched ReadyFill in 2009. The program coordinates refills for eligible maintenance prescriptions to save customers time and help them stay on track with their medications without contributing to prescription oversupply. Those who choose to enroll in the program receive reminder messages when their prescription is ready to be picked up. Concerns had previously been raised about the potential of these programs to produce drug waste by reducing a patient’s involvement in the dispensing process, which could result in unnecessary health care spending.

Medication adherence is a major public health issue that costs the health care system nearly $300 billion each year. Approximately 50 percent of American adults are prescribed a maintenance medication for a chronic disease such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Yet many patients do not adhere to their prescribed therapies. As a pharmacy innovation company, CVS Health is building a range of programs to meet the various challenges individual patients face when taking their medications. These include programs that help align prescription refills for patients with multiple maintenance medications, comprehensive medication reviews to help identify potential safety issues and adherence-improving interventions that can be delivered at the retail pharmacy, via digital tools and at the patient’s home.

The CVS Health Research Institute is focused on contributing to the body of scientific knowledge related to pharmacy and health care through research collaborations with external academic institutions, participation in federally funded research, analysis and sharing of CVS Health data sources and coordination of pilot programs and initiatives. CVS Health Research Institute findings support a continuous quality improvement environment, which encourages product innovation and development to benefit CVS Health patients, clients and their members.

For more detail on the data, please visit the following link: http://www.ajmc.com/journals/issue/2015/2015-vol21-n11/Community-Pharmacy-Automatic-Refill-Program-Improves-Adherence-to-Maintenance-Therapy-and-Reduces-Wasted-Medication

About CVS Health
CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its more than 7,900 retail drugstores, more than 1,000 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with more than 70 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, the Company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable, effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at www.cvshealth.com.

MEDIA CONTACT

Carolyn Castel
1-401-770-5717
carolyn.castel@cvshealth.com

SOURCE: CVS Health

CVS Health Research Institute: High patient satisfaction with the quality of care delivered via telehealth at MinuteClinic retail medical clinics

WOONSOCKET, R.I., 2015-8-19— /EPR Retail News/ — New data from the CVS Health (NYSE:  CVS) Research Institute demonstrates very high levels of patient satisfaction with the quality of care delivered via telehealth at MinuteClinic retail medical clinics. Satisfaction with quality of care and other factors were measured among patients participating in a pilot program of telehealth care rolled out at MinuteClinic locations in California and Texas in 2014, and the findings were published on-line in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

“In the United States today, approximately a quarter of patients do not have a primary care provider or have incomplete access to one,” said William Shrank, M.D., chief scientific officer, CVS Health. “This lack of access, combined with an increased demand for care resulting from expanded coverage under the Affordable Care Act, and the challenge of finding convenient care for patients balancing work and personal responsibilities, necessitate exploration of alternative, high quality care options such as telehealth in the MinuteClinic setting.”

The study evaluated de-identified responses from more than 1,700 patients who participated in the MinuteClinic telehealth pilot. Patients had services at a CVS MinuteClinic location, provided by a remote clinician using telehealth technology. Patients were asked if they had health insurance and a primary care provider and rated their satisfaction with a number of measures associated with their telehealth visit, including quality of care and convenience. Patients were also asked to rank their experience of a telehealth visit as compared to that of a traditional visit, when the patient and a health care provider are face-to-face, in the same room. Overall, 95 percent of patients were highly satisfied with the quality of care they received, the ease with which telehealth technology was integrated into the visit, and the timeliness and convenience of their care. In addition, one-third of patients indicated that they preferred a telehealth visit to a visit with a clinician in the same room, in particular those patients without health insurance, and nearly all found telehealth to be just as good as or better than a traditional visit.

“MinuteClinic has long been focused on providing accessible, high quality, affordable health care that is complementary and supportive of the primary care provider,” said Andrew Sussman, M.D., President, CVS/minuteclinic, and executive vice president/associate chief medical officer, CVS Health. “Telehealth provides us with an opportunity to offer convenient, high quality care to an extended group of patients and this data confirms that patients are highly satisfied with this new type of health care provider visit.”

As a health care provider, MinuteClinic is focused on delivering high quality, accessible care for common illnesses. MinuteClinic is committed to continuity of care, fully supports the physician-led medical home and believes that MinuteClinic can play a complementary role with primary care practices in providing care to patients. MinuteClinic is affiliated with more than 60 major health systems around the country to improve collaboration, integrate medical records and collaborate on chronic disease care.

The CVS Health Research Institute is focused on contributing to the body of scientific knowledge related to pharmacy and health care through research collaborations with external academic institutions, participation in federally-funded research, analysis and sharing of CVS Health data sources and coordination of pilot programs and initiatives. CVS Health Research Institute findings support a continuous quality improvement environment, which encourages product innovation and development to benefit CVS Health patients, clients and their members.

About CVS Health

CVS Health (NYSE:  CVS) is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its 7,800 retail drugstores, nearly 1,000 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with more than 70 million plan members, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, the Company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable, effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at www.cvshealth.com.

Media Contacts:

Christina Beckerman
CVS Health
(401) 770-8868
christina.beckerman@cvshealth.com

Brent Burkhardt
TBC (for MinuteClinic)
410-986-1303
bburkhardt@tbc.us