Wellmark Inc. has hired a unit of HealthExtras Inc. to manage its pharmacy benefits programs.

The pharmacy benefit manager unit, Catalyst RX, will start running drug programs July 1 for 1.3 million Wellmark health plan members in Iowa and South Dakota, according to HealthExtras, Rockville, Md.

Wellmark, Des Moines, Iowa, is the parent company of Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Iowa and of Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Dakota.