March 2016 Volume 18 Issue 3
Providing Current Information on

Health Insurance Industry Issues and Legislation

Average Drug Prices Double in 7 Years
The average price of 622 prescription medicines widely used by older Americans
doubled from 2006 to 2013 reaching $11,341. Disturbingly, prices for the 622 brand
name, generic and specialty drugs increased 9.4% in 2013, 6 times the inflation rate.
A variety of factors are contributing to these ongoing increases.
Supreme Court Upholds ERISA Precedence over State Law
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the Employees Retirement Income
Security Act (ERISA), as federal law, takes precedence over state law. In a 6-2 decision
in Gobeille v. Liberty Mutual Insurance, the court found that ERISA protects self-funded
insurers from having to share certain information with the state of Vermont. However,
the court left the door open for the states to ask the federal Department of Labor to
require self-funding employers provide the information.
$3 Billion of Cancer Drugs Going Down the Drain
Almost $3 billion of cancer medicines bought by the federal government and
private health insurers are literally being thrown away every year. The reason is
unlike in other countries in the U.S. drug makers only distribute cancer drugs
in vials that contain too much product for use with most patients.
Readmission Rates Decrease Saving Billions
Hospital readmissions within 30 days of discharge are costing employers and the
government tens of billions of dollars a year. Over the last 8 years readmission
rates for target conditions fell 17% and non-targeted conditions 14%. Most of
the decrease occurred from March 2010 to October 2012, immediately before
the penalties from the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program created as part
of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into effect.
Three Star Preferred Provider Program Additions
ASHIS K3 Rakhit
Strongsville, OH 44136

Cerritos 2020 Optometry
Cerritos, CA 90703

Golden Triangle ER Services PA Pro
Houston, TX 77081

Kyle Emergency Center
Houston, TX 77081

Liberato Salvatore
Bayside, NY 11361

Lufkin ER
Houston, TX 77081

Michael Gilliland
Lake Jackson, TX 77566

Mineola Medical Lab
Mineola, NY 11501

Northern Hills Alcohol Drug Service
Sturgis, SD 57785
Paul Caton
Beaver Falls, PA 15010

Precision Surgery Center
Wichita, KS 67206

Rocky Toxicology
Durango, CO 81301

Timothy Chrapkiewicz
Harvard, IL 60033

Tyler Emergency Center
Tyler, TX 757018

Universal Imaging and Radiology
Miami Lakes, FL 330161

William Bailer
Bellaire, OH 439061

Womans Clinic
Sugar Land, TX 77479