Express Scripts Improves Patient Access to Digital Health Solutions
- Future-focused formulary for digital health, medicine and therapeutics will allow employers and health plans to effectively manage a fast-growing segment of health care while improving access for patients
- 15 clinically validated programs from leading digital health developers to be included in first release
ST. LOUIS, Dec. 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- As more people turn to digital programs to improve their health, Express Scripts is making it easier to connect consumers with the apps and devices that work best for them.
Today, Express Scripts announced the first formulary for digital and mobile health apps and devices – a fast-growing segment of health care that aims to help people with serious illnesses like diabetes and high blood pressure to take better control of their health, improve their quality of life and lower their total costs.
Participating health plans and employers can increase patients' access to emerging products and technologies simply and affordably, and can rest easier with the knowledge that these new tools have been reviewed by a team of experts who will ensure the products work, provide a user-friendly experience and are worth the investment. People who use a program on the Digital Health Formulary also will receive support from Express Scripts specialist pharmacists to ensure appropriate use of the technology.
"The Express Scripts Digital Health Formulary will do for the developing digital health care industry what our drug formularies have achieved for prescription medications for more than 20 years – access, choice and value for payers and patients," said Mark Bini, chief patient experience officer, Express Scripts. "We are setting the bar high for clinical effectiveness, user experience and financial value for these solutions, while also combining coverage into the pharmacy benefit and providing patients with expert support from Express Scripts specialist pharmacists."
Starting in January 2020, the Express Scripts Digital Health Formulary initially includes 15 solutions including remote monitoring services and digital therapeutics that aid in the management of eight of the country's most common chronic conditions: diabetes, prediabetes, hypertension, asthma, pulmonary disease, depression, anxiety and insomnia. The first selected solutions on the formulary include:
Livongo, which will have preferred status on the formulary, for their diabetes, diabetes prevention and hypertension family of products
Omada Health digital care programs for diabetes, diabetes prevention and hypertension
LifeScan OneTouch Reveal® Plus powered by Welldoc's BlueStar® platform for diabetes
Learn to Live and SilverCloud Health digital mental health platforms for depression, anxiety and insomnia
Propeller Health digital health programs for asthma and COPD
These solutions engage with patients in a variety of ways, for example:
Allowing a pharmacist or nurse to remotely monitor a patient's use of a drug therapy
Synching to diagnostic devices that provide patients or their caregivers with vital information, like blood sugar or blood pressure, and alerts them to potential concerns
Offering virtual personal coaching from a health or wellness professional
Provide virtual support from a patient's peer
Express Scripts reviewed more than 70 digital health products for this first round of the formulary, in a four-stage process that tested each product for:
Security and privacy compliance
Value and affordability
"The Express Scripts Digital Health Formulary is an important and necessary pathway that will help ensure people with chronic disease can access clinically proven digital health solutions," said David Van Sickle, CEO and co-founder of Propeller Health. "We have carefully developed our technology over nine years to deliver safe and effective care to people with chronic respiratory disease, and inclusion on the Express Scripts Digital Health Formulary is a recognition of the value we provide to patients and plans."
Making Digital Health Easy and Reliable With more than 300,000 digital products on the market today, it can be overwhelming to figure out which one is best for a specific condition. Currently, employers and health plans offer digital health programs to their members without a common review process, a way to obtain the best value, or an ability to easily integrate the product into their overall health benefit. Research from the National Business Group on Health shows that half of employers anticipate digital health solutions having a very significant impact on their members. However, the digital health industry itself is still relatively new: a quarter of digital health companies have less than two years of experience.
Access + Clinical Support Digital health care is creating a sea change for pharmacists, allowing them to expand their roles to counsel patients on how they can use a digital health product or program to achieve their health goals.
For example, in just one year, pulmonary remote monitoring with the Propeller Health program – in concert with Express Scripts pulmonary specialist pharmacist support – led to improvements in symptoms, an 82% decrease in use of rescue inhalers, and a 10% increase in adherence to controller medications that help to prevent adverse asthma symptoms and exacerbations.
"It's our job to find the right digital health solutions for our clients and patients, and then make sure patients use these solutions effectively," said Bini. "With the Express Scripts Digital Health Formulary, we've created more than just a list of approved programs or a vendor management process. We built a foundation for the future of care and pharmacy that will deliver better access, affordability and health."
About Express Scripts Express Scripts is a health care opportunity company. Empowered by our legacy as an industry innovator, we dare to imagine — and deliver — a better health care system with greater choice, predictability, affordability and improved outcomes. From pharmacy and medical benefits management, to specialty pharmacy care and everything in between, we uncover opportunities to make health care better.
We stand alongside our clients and partners, collaborating to develop personalized solutions that make a meaningful difference in the lives of those we serve, whenever and wherever it's needed. We believe health care can do more.
We are Champions For Better.
Express Scripts, a Cigna company, unlocks new value in pharmacy, medical and beyond to further total health for all.