NU Online News Service, Oct. 23, 3:35 p.m. – Two large unaffiliated Blue Cross and Blue Shield organizations say they will administer several pharmacy-benefit management functions jointly to better control costs of prescription drugs.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2003, the Regence Group, Salt Lake City, will partner with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network of Michigan, both in Detroit.
Regence affiliate plans, in addition to the Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah, are Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, Regence Blue Shield in Washington State and Regence BlueShield of Idaho.
Other Blues companies manage some prescription-drug functions together in a vendor-customer relationship, but this arrangement focuses instead on collaborative efforts, the companies say in a joint announcement. Prescription drugs are high on the list of causes of rapidly increasing health-care costs throughout the country, the companies note.