New resources for independents help patients, pharmacies thrive


AmerisourceBergen amps up its tools for community pharmacies

Providing tools to independent pharmacies to help improve patient care and support fair and timely reimbursement for pharmacists ranks high among AmerisourceBergen’s priorities. At ThoughtSpot 2015, Good Neighbor Pharmacy’s annual trade show, the company unveiled a suite of innovative capabilities designed to enhance patient care and improve pharmacy profitability at the front and back ends of the store.

See also: Pharmacists at Thoughtspot2014 committed to transforming patient care

Its new Elevate Provider Network will provide Good Neighbor Pharmacy owners with access to the premier level of AmerisourceBergen services, including a new patient engagement center and capability set from Prescribe Wellness, pre- and post-claims editing services from Emdeon, expanded capabilities from FDS to monitor account receivables, and a revamped InSite pharmacy performance tool for peer-benchmarking.

“We made a series of targeted investments to help our customers with their No. 1 challenge - reimbursement. All of our investments are aimed at combating the growing industry challenges surrounding reimbursements,” said Chuck Reed, group vice president, Pharmacy and Technology, at AmerisourceBergen Drug Corp.

Patient engagement

A new patient engagement center, powered by Prescribe Wellness, provides pharmacies with real-time patient adherence data to target those patients who need extra attention and reminders to pick up their prescriptions. The patient engagement center can help improve patient medication adherence and help the pharmacy improve its performance within the CMS Five Star Quality Rating System.

See also: Community pharmacy and CMS Star Ratings

“With our new patient engagement screen, pharmacies can see their Star scores on each of the measures. They can easily identify which patients are not adherent and develop strategies to help those patients,” Reed said.

Drawing on a background of experience in consumer behavior, Prescribe Wellness has created outbound messaging technology designed to provide appropriate messages from individual pharmacists to patients who are late picking up their prescriptions. The underlying assumption is that when patients hear the voices of their own pharmacists, they will be more likely to visit the pharmacy for prescription refills.

Financial tools

To help pharmacies create accurate claims before they are sent to the payers, AmerisourceBergen has partnered with Emdeon, a provider of revenue and payment-cycle management, to review each claim to ensure that pharmacies receive fair reimbursements. “We are looking to catch and fix errors before they get to the payer,” Reed said.

Emdeon loads all the captured claims into the revamped InSite pharmacy performance center system, enabling AmerisourceBergen to help Good Neighbor Pharmacy owners benchmark themselves against their peers using real-time pharmacy data.

In addition to the claims data, AmerisourceBergen can add the front-end data from the point-of-sale systems into its database, so that pharmacies can also compare their performance from the front-end part of the store against similar stores.

AmerisourceBergen has also expanded its central pay capabilities with FDS, its partner since 2009. Pharmacies can easily match their claims against their payments through the addition of claim reconciliation services, which provides greater visibility of aged receivables.


A business coach

When AmerisourceBergen first introduced its InSite center in 2008, one of the key elements was the business coach, who could analyze the pharmacy data and provide one-on-one guidance for individual pharmacies. With the recently revamped center, the business coach can easily see how pharmacies are doing compared with their peers and provide guidance to improve profitability.

“We are really trying to help our pharmacies transform their businesses to be more patient-centered and less prescription-centered,” Reed said. “Over the last year, we have had to double the number of coaches with the growth of our program. So now all our pharmacies can have a business coach.”

With all these new capabilities to strengthen its Pharmacy Services Administration Organization, AmerisourceBergen has demonstrated its commitment to independents, which is a key component of its business, he added.

“We are going to continue to provide resources that help them run a successful business and deliver true community healthcare,” Reed said.

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