Can You Believe What Happened to Me at the Pharmacy?

pharmacy counter with blur shelves of drug in the pharmacy drugstore background

This is going to be a rant blog. I happen to know that a lot of people from Aetna (which is my insurer) read this. But, it really doesn’t matter whether it’s Aetna or another medical insurer – they all have the same issues. Thankfully I am reasonably healthy. As with most people, my most frequent encounter with the… [Read More]

Is Consumerism a Field of Dreams?

healthcare cost2

The ACA Times, an online industry publication, recently reported on a JAMA Internal Medicine research survey of factors considered when choosing physicians. Significantly, only 10% of respondents considered changing doctors and only 4% considered cost comparisons when making their choice. This was the case whether the plan was a traditional plan or a high deductible… [Read More]

Another Setback for Private Exchanges

Medical touch screen

Only three years ago, we were told that the future of healthcare had arrived. Mimicking employers’ transition of retirement plan treatment, employers were going to be freezing traditional benefit programs en masse and migrating their employees to a “defined contribution” private exchange model – a model where costs were fixed and employees bear the financial… [Read More]

Is Your Benefits Communication Reaching Your Millennial Employees?

iphone  millennial communications

As the baby boomers continue to move toward retirement, millennials are fast becoming the new majority in the workforce. As an employer, do you know how to speak their language? Millennials were born in the 1980s and 1990s, making them around 20 to 35 years old today – they are the first generation that doesn’t… [Read More]

The New Media Focus Is Pharmacy – Can Regulators Keep Up?  How Should Employers Protect Themselves? 

Drug Cost  Specialty Pharmacy

Turing Pharmaceuticals – the vilified hedge fund-owned prescription drug peddler that increased the cost of their 62-year-old drug from $13.50 to $750 per tablet overnight – has raised new cries for the legislative involvement in pharmaceutical costs which I have been writing about for a while (see related posts here, here and here). A recent Reuters study… [Read More]

Education is Critical in High Deductible Plan Management

Education is Critical in High Deductible Plan Management

A recent study by Truven Health Analytics confirms that there are savings in consumer-directed health plans (CDHPs). In a three year study of 183,000 continuously enrolled CDHP members, an annual savings of $457 to $532 per member per year, or almost 10%, was demonstrated. This, while the number of employers offering CDHPs increased to 64%… [Read More]

Want Employee Partners in Cost Containment? Don’t Wait to Give Them the Tools


With the transformation of the healthcare system from an entitlement to a consumer-centric model, a sea change is needed in the way employers communicate healthcare cost transparency. An employee facing a life-threatening illness shouldn’t be learning for the first time about how to determine and compare the cost of healthcare services. Cost may be the… [Read More]