Are you thinking about changing your pharmacy’s traditional business model to stay competitive? If so, you may be considering expanding clinical services for your patients.

If your pharmacy goes down that path, it would be helpful to know the prevention and wellness benefits employers and health plans are offering workers and enrollees. Five reports identify benefit trends your pharmacy can build into its new business plan.

1. More employers are offering health assessments and biometric screenings to workers

That’s according to the 2017 Employer Health Benefit Survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research and Education Trust. The report is based on a survey of 2,137 U.S. employers. It said 39 percent of employers offered workers a health risk assessment in 2017. That’s up from 19 percent in 2015. A similar jump was seen in biometric screenings. In 2017, 22 percent of employers offered workers a biometric screening, compared with 14 percent in 2015. Twenty-nine percent of employers used a third-party like your pharmacy to administer assessments and screenings in 2017. At companies with 200 or more employees, that number was even higher—48 percent.

Five Prevention and Wellness Benefit Trends Your Pharmacy Should Know
2. Behavioral coaching is gaining in popularity as interest in seminars and workshops wanes

One-on-one coaching to change health behaviors is gaining in popularity as a benefit. That’s according to the 2017 Health Plan Survey conducted by United Benefit Advisors. The report is based on a survey of 11,221 employers. The report said 59.3 percent of employers offered onsite or telephone behavioral coaching to high-risk employees in 2017. That’s up from 50.8 percent in 2016 and 43.3 percent in 2015. If you offer behavioral coaching, this trend may be a growing business opportunity. Group interventions like seminars and workshops are on the decline. In 2017, 39.3 percent of the surveyed employers offered seminars and workshops as a covered wellness benefit, compared with 42.4 percent in 2016 and 50.9 percent in 2015.

3. Nearly half of all employers now offer disease management benefits to workers

Two findings from the Workplace Wellness 2017 Survey from the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans also may create an opportunity for your pharmacy. The report is based on a survey of 530 companies. The report said 48.1 percent of companies offer disease management benefits to workers. Separately, 11.5 percent offered an onsite or near-site pharmacy to employees. If your pharmacy offers chronic disease services beyond filling prescriptions, the two benefits are positive news. The survey identified another benefit that covers a clinical service you may already provide: flu shots. The report said 76.8 percent of the companies give discounted or free flu shots to employees.

4. Employers are increasing wellness benefits and variety of services available to workers

Wellness and health-related benefits are the employment prerequisites getting the most attention from employers. That’s according to the 2017 Employee Benefits report from the Society for Human Resource Management. The report is based on a survey of 3,227 human resources professionals. Wellness and health-related benefits ranked first and second, respectively, as the benefits most increased by employers over the past year. The survey also documented more than 300 wellness benefits offered by the companies. Among them are:

  • Onsite seasonal flu vaccinations (58 percent)
  • Smoking cessation programs (37 percent)
  • Health fairs (35 percent)
  • Weight loss programs (30 percent)
  • Nutritional counseling (16 percent)
5. Employers are looking to medication management services to control health spending

Other services your pharmacy can offer like medication reconciliation, medication therapy management and comprehensive medication reviews are in demand from employers. That’s the takeaway from the Large Employers' 2018 Health Care Strategy and Plan Design Survey from the National Business Group on Health. The report is based on a survey of 148 major employers. The most effective tactics to control costs are “pharmacy management techniques.” Among the tactics were:

  • Requiring workers to receive all maintenance medications by mail order
  • Integrating medical and pharmacy data
  • Site-of-care management
  • High-touch case management

Employers and health plans are expanding prevention and wellness benefits. The reimbursable services present new revenue opportunities for your pharmacy in an expanded business model.

Related: Learn more about McKesson’s growth and expansion services for pharmacies

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McKesson editorial staff is committed to sharing innovative approaches and insights so our customers can get the most out of their business solutions and identify areas for operational improvement and revenue growth.

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