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Pharmacy startup Blink Health has a new approach for how it provides discounts to patients paying for prescriptions in cash.
After its relationship with pharmacy benefit manager MedImpact soured and major pharmacies left the Blink network, Blink helped set up a new middleman to manage its relationships with pharmacies, called Blue Eagle.

For healthcare startup Blink Health, shaking up the prescription drug industry hasn’t gone as planned.

Two of the largest pharmaceutical chains in the US stopped working with Blink in 2017, and its relationship with its biggest business partner soured shortly after.

New York-based Blink, which provides prescription drug discounts to patients through a free app and has raised $165 million in venture funding, is now taking matters into its own hands.

Blink said on Wednesday it is creating an alternative to large pharmaceutical middlemen known as pharmacy benefit managers, which negotiate drug prices on behalf of health plans and employers. President Donald Trump in May called out the middlemen in the pharmaceutical industry as part of his plan to tackle high drug prices.

The new company, called Blue Eagle, is working in partnership with Blink to manage a network of pharmacies where Blink’s discounts can be used.

“If we were going to create an alternative to the prescription management industrial complex, we needed to create a system that worked for pharmacies, worked for patients, and worked for manufacturers,” said Blink CEO Geoffrey Chaiken.

In the US, patients are feeling the effect of higher drug prices. Health plans with high deductibles —the amount of money paid out of pocket before insurance kicks in — are leaving patients on the hook for close to the full price of a medication. It’s led to people paying as much as a mortgage payment for a monthly supply of the live-saving diabetes medication …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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