OBR Daily Commentary

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Congressman, Pharmacist, and Lawyer Debate PBMs, Drug Prices at Annual COA Meeting

(AJMC.com) Apr 27, 2017 - At the 2017 Community Oncology Conference, participants discussed the impact of pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) on oncology drug prices and patient access to much needed treatments.

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Winston Wong, PharmD (Posted: May 08, 2017)

quotesDefinitely a very volatile topic. PBMs control a good part of the prescription claims process, but it the back room negotiations with regards to rebate's, etc that require more transparency. However, not everything can be pinned on the PBM. Bottomline is that everyone has a stake, and has contributed to the high prices.quotes

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Grassley Probes Insurer Over ‘Penalties’ Charged For Brand-Name Drugs

(STAT/Pharmalot) Apr 18, 2017 - After months of targeting drug makers over their pricing, Senator Chuck Grassley is now probing one of the biggest insurers in the mid-Atlantic region, opening what may become another front in the battle over the cost of prescription medicines.

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Winston Wong, PharmD (Posted: April 25, 2017)

quotesGenerally, when a Physician indicates a "Dispensed a Written", on a prescription, it is honored by the health plan and the member pays the branded copay. On the other side of the table, members also ask for the brand out of pure preference, which is what payers are focusing on. Obviously, in this case, if the article is accurate, no DAW code is being recognized.quotes

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Drug Spending Slows for Major Pharmacy Benefit Managers

(Drug Topics) Apr 17, 2017 - Drug spending is leveling off, but the gap between list and net drug prices continues to grow. Despite recent scrutiny about drug spending, new reports from four of the largest pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) reveal minimal changes in drug trend percentages.

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Winston Wong, PharmD (Posted: April 19, 2017)

quotesSo lets take a different, more cynical approach to the flat trend being observed. Yes, I'll grant that there might be something to the advance utilization management programs. But, should we also take into account that as drug costs increase, so does patient liability, which means maybe trends are flattening because patient cannot afford to pick up their prescriptions, hence no cost is recorded. As well, we are only looking at the prescription benefit side. Much of the sensitivity surrounding drugs cost are under the medical benefit, so are we looking at the entire picture? I think not. Maybe we need to take a step back and look at cost from a much broader view. quotes

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Meet the Editorial Board

Community Oncology
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Dean Gesme, MD

FACP FACPE FASCO President, Minnesota Oncology...

Breast Cancer
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Debu Tripathy, MD

Professor and Chair, Department of Breast Medical Oncol...

Lung Cancer
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H. Jack West, MD

Medical Director, Thoracic Oncology Program, Swedish Ca...

Gastrointestinal Cancers
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Howard S. Hochster, MD

Associate Cancer Center Director, Yale Cancer Center P...

Community Oncology
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Jeff Patton, M.D.

CEO Tennessee Oncology...

Precision Medicine Section Editor
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Jennifer Levin Carter, MD, MPH

Chief Medical Officer and Founder, N-of-One...

Financial Sector
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Michael G. King Jr.

Managing Director and Senior Biotechnology Analyst...

Gastrointestinal Cancers
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Richard Goldberg, MD

Director WVU Cancer Institute Director of Cancer Signa...

Editor-In-Chief
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Robert A. Figlin, MD., FACP

Professor and Director, Division of Hematology Oncology...

Health Policy
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Ted Okon

Executive Director Community Oncology Alliance...

Community Oncology
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Thomas Marsland, MD

Vice President Integrated Community Oncology Network ...

Community Oncology
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William Harwin MD

Florida Cancer Specialists President and Managing Part...

Health Policy
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William McGivney, PhD

National Health Policy Expert...

Payer
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Winston Wong, PharmD

President, W-Squared Group...