A cost shift too far

A cost shift too far

Higher copays may reduce drug costs but can also have the effect of discouraging patients from taking needed medications. According to a RAND study, lowering copays on cholesterol drugs for the sickest patients could reduce hospital costs by $1 billion per year.

Expect to see health plans embark on more integrated management of medical and drug benefits and greater emphasis on compliance and persistency.

February 3, 2006

2 thoughts on “A cost shift too far”

  1. Does the study address co-pays for ED and office visits?

    Even my office staff agrees that raising co-pays would reduce uneccessary ‘sick’ visits.

    And I can’t believe that raising ED co-pays won’t reduce bogus ED visits.



  2. The study focused on drug copays for the sickest patients taking cholesterol lowering medications. For those folks there is probably an argument for paying them to take their drugs. For the ED, there might be an argument to go the other way and raise copays.

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