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Industry Updates

This broad category includes articles concerning health insurance costs, carrier and health plan news, changing benefits technology, and surveys by the Kaiser Family Foundation and others on employee benefits.

Blue Shield Of California CEO: PBMs Need To ‘Fundamentally’ Change

Blue Shield of California shocked a lot of people when it announced it was going to drop CVS Health (CVS) as its main pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) and instead go with companies like Amazon Pharmacy (AMZN) and Mark Cuban's Cost Plus Drugs.

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Rite Aid Reportedly Plans Bankruptcy Filing To Restructure Debt, Halt Pending Opioid Lawsuits

Rite Aid is reportedly preparing to file for bankruptcy within a few weeks to help restructure its debt and potentially halt ongoing lawsuits. The move is said to be an attempt to address mass federal and state lawsuits Rite Aid faces over its alleged role in the opioid crisis, The Wall Street Journal first reported Friday. ...

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Employers’ Healthcare Costs Expected To Rise 8.5% in 2024

Employers' healthcare costs are anticipated to rise by 8.5% in 2024, according to Aon. The projected increase is nearly twice the 4.5% increase that employers saw from 2022 to 2023. Inflation is a major factor for the increase.

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As Drug Costs Rise, Employers Would Like To See Reforms Extend To Commercial Space: Business Group

The Business Group on Health released its annual survey of large employers this week and found that 91% are either concerned or very concerned about overall pharmacy cost trend. Alongside that finding, the survey identified that the median spending on pharmacy continues to grow, rising from 21% in 2021 to 24% in 2022.

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HHS Awards $1.4B In Grants To Develop Future COVID-19 Tools

The Biden administration on Tuesday announced it is awarding $1.4 billion in grants through its coronavirus initiative to fund the development of “a new generation of tools and technologies to protect against COVID-19 for years to come.” Through the Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response (ASPR), the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) awarded ...

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U.S. Says Stolen COVID Relief Funds Seized So Far Top $1.4 Billion

The U.S. Justice Department said on Wednesday it has seized over $1.4 billion in COVID-19 relief funds that criminals had stolen, and charged over 3,000 defendants with crimes in federal districts across the country. The Justice Department disclosed the results of a nationwide enforcement action to combat coronavirus fraud, including federal criminal charges against 371 ...

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U.S. CDC Says New COVID Lineage Could Cause Infections In Vaccinated Individuals

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Wednesday the new BA.2.86 lineage of coronavirus may be more capable than older variants in causing infection in people who have previously had COVID-19 or who have received vaccines. CDC said it was too soon to know whether this might cause more severe illness ...

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GOP Push To Get More Americans Into High-Deductible Health Is Dividing Democrats

Bipartisan legislation aims to get more Americans into high-deductible insurance, but perils would remain.

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Bosses Dislike Work-From-Home But Suspect They’re Stuck With It

Business leaders think that the spread of remote work has had more negative effects than positive ones, but they also see the practice becoming ingrained, according to a new survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Roughly two-thirds of respondents said remote work had a negative impact in four areas: workplace culture, cohesiveness and team ...

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The US Pays More For Newer Weight Loss Drugs Than Its Peers: Report

The prices charged for drugs like Ozempic, Wegovy and Mounjaro are significantly higher in the U.S. when compared with other wealthy nations, with the list price being 10 times lower in some countries, according to a new analysis from KFF. As KFF’s analysis found, a one-month supply of Ozempic — which is indicated for diabetes ...

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