New Blues-Owned Drug Contracting Org Wants to Work With, Not Against Providers, CEO Says

A new venture founded by Blue Cross and Blue Shield affiliates, called the Synergie Medication Collective, aims to improve affordability and access to drugs covered under the medical benefit — a category that includes cancer medications and cell/gene therapies. Synergie’s chief executive says the goal isn’t to disrupt the current distribution system for clinically administered drugs, but rather to leverage the Blues’ size and bargaining power to scale up innovations like outcomes-based contracting for some of the country’s priciest drugs.

“We’re basically a medical contracting organization,” Synergie CEO Jerrod Henshaw tells AIS Health, a division of MMIT. “And by that, I mean we’re not going to be buying and billing like a Vizient or a HealthTrust and displacing any of that. We’re not going to be in the distribution channel.”

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Leslie Small

Leslie Small

Leslie has been working in journalism since 2009 and reporting on the health care industry since 2014. She has covered the many ups and downs of the Affordable Care Act exchanges, the failed health insurer mega-mergers, and hundreds of other storylines spanning subjects such as Medicaid managed care, Medicare Advantage, employer-sponsored insurance, and prescription drug coverage. As the managing editor of Health Plan Weekly and Radar on Drug Benefits, she writes and edits for both publications while overseeing a small team of reporters who also focus on the managed care sector. Before joining AIS Health, she was a senior editor for the e-newsletter Fierce Health Payer, and she started her career as a copy editor at multiple local newspapers. She graduated with a dual degree in journalism and political science from Penn State University.

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