A bold new partnership to lower the cost of prescription drugs
Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies believe everyone should have access to safe, effective prescription medicines when they need them and at a price they can afford.
That’s why 18 Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association are partnering with the nonprofit Civica Rx to manufacture select high-cost generic prescriptions. We can and we will lower costs for Americans.
If you share our passion for affordable, quality medications, we invite you to join our partnership.
We welcome all interested pharmacies, health plans, employers, retailers, wholesalers and other innovators to participate. Contact us to share your interest and we will get back to you with more information.
How our partnership will work:
Commit $55 million to bring select generic drugs to market
Invite other companies who believe patients come first to join us
Prioritize generic medications with the biggest potential for savings
Produce high-quality generic drugs
Ensure savings are passed on to patients
Working together, we can lower the cost of prescription drugs
Scott P. Serota, president and CEO, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Martin VanTrieste, president and CEO, Civica Rx, and Daniel R. Liljenquist, SVP and chief strategy officer, Intermountain Healthcare, and Chairman of the Board, Civica Rx, share how BCBS companies and Civica have the combined experience, know-how and commitment to solve a problem that impacts all of us.
Learn more about why we are partnering with Civica Rx
How does this subsidiary encourage greater competition within the drug industry, and do you see an opportunity to expand this effort beyond outpatient generic drugs?
“This new non-profit Civica Rx subsidiary will ensure a steady supply of select outpatient generic drugs at lower costs to consumers, which we expect will result in drug manufacturers lowering their prices in order to remain competitive. It will also force more cost transparency, which benefits all consumers. If this model is successful and delivers the cost benefits we anticipate, then expanding the program is definitely something we should and will explore.”
David Holmberg, president and CEO, Highmark Health
What impact will this partnership have for consumers?
“Drugs are too expensive for the wrong reasons. They’re not too expensive because of innovation. They’re too expensive because sometimes there isn’t enough competition. We plan to introduce competitive alternatives to the marketplace to ensure we have affordable drugs available to our members. This is not happening naturally now. Anytime, anywhere a drug is off patent, it’s an opportunity for us to create an alternative and ensure that consumers are not only getting high-quality drugs, but they’re affordable.”
Paul Markovich, president and CEO, Blue Shield of California
What was it about this partnership and the formation of this subsidiary that appealed to you as a leader of a Blue company?
"We believe healthcare needs to be easier to afford and understand. Idaho families should not have to choose between purchasing a needed prescription drug or paying essential bills. We are pleased to be part of this partnership with Civica Rx to ensure Idahoans have access to affordable generic medications. Our members are our family, our friends and our neighbors. We are proud to stand with our fellow Idahoans and offer an innovative solution to lower the cost of prescription drugs."
Charlene Maher, president and CEO, Blue Cross of Idaho
Our partnership with Civica is one of many ways BCBS companies are ensuring patients and their needs come first. Learn more about how BCBS companies are addressing drug prices for the Health of America:
Frequently Asked Questions:
Generic medicines tend to cost less than brand name drugs because they’re already FDA approved, so there’s less investment in research and development to bring the drug to market. But the fewer competitors there are for a generic drug, the higher the prices tend to be.
Initially, we will focus on bringing select high-cost generics to market. We’re disrupting traditional for profit manufacturing to ensure patients have access to safe, effective generic prescriptions at an affordable price.
BCBS companies will not be directly involved in manufacturing. Civica has an experienced leadership team, all of whom have significant tenure in the pharmaceutical industry.
Right now we’re focusing on select high-cost generics with the greatest potential for savings. They treat a range of health conditions. These drugs will be available to consumers by 2022.
Civica works with high quality manufacturers to ensure each drug produced is FDA-approved as safe and effective.
Success in our new partnership will mean significant savings for individuals and families. We expect initial generic medications to be available by early 2022, and anticipate hundreds of millions in savings generated from the partnership that will be passed along to consumers.
Founding BCBS Members of the Civica Rx-BCBS Partnership:
*Pending state regulatory approval