Prescriptions On Time, Save $20 –
New UHC Program
UnitedHealthcare (UHC) enrollees who refill
certain medications on a timely basis are in line to receive a $20
discount per drug refill. "The Refill and Save Program" targets co-pays
for select asthma and depression medications.
The Refill and Save Program is available to most
of UHC’s fully insured commercial health plan participants
and is believed to be the first of its kind, the company said.
The insurer estimates that approximately 50
percent of its customers who take asthma medicines and 20percent of its
customers who take antidepressants are not compliant with their
The $20 co-pay discount translates into a 40
percent savings on a typical co-payment plan, UHC said.
Health plan participants who refill their
prescriptions via mail order will receive a $50 discount on a 90-day
supply of medicine, with a refill deadline of approximately 120 days.
"Patients with chronic diseases such as asthma and
depression who take their medicines regularly and who comply with
prescribed treatments are likely to stay healthier," said Tim Heady,
CEO of UnitedHealth Pharmaceutical Solutions.
Affected medicines include asthma drugs Advair and
Symbicort, and antidepressants Cymbalta, Effexor XR and Pristiq. They
were selected for the program because the health benefits realized from
increased adherence are often seen relatively quickly, Heady said. "We
anticipate that increased pharmacy costs that result from wider
utilization will be offset by savings in medical costs," he added.
"Research has clearly shown that individuals are
more sensitive than ever to the cost of their medications given the
current economy," said Dr. Mark Fendrick, director of the Center for
Value Based Insurance Design at the University of Michigan.
Address: UnitedHealthcare, 5901 Lincoln Dr.,
Minneapolis, MN 55436; (952) 992-7777, www.unitedhealthcare.com.