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State Cost-Saving Measure Receives National Recognition

Press Release

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Location: Helena, MT

Governor Brian Schweitzer today announced that Montana's pharmacy management program for state and university employees received national recognition for its innovative approach to lowering the costs of prescriptions.

"Health care costs continue to rise for everyone," said Governor Brian Schweitzer. "We can't continue to try to manage these costs in the same way we have been trying for years. The success of our new pharmacy management program, known to us as "URx", proves that challenging every expense works."

The national Pharmacy Benefit Management Institute recognized the URx program at its annual conference for its "originality, strength in reported results, and potential to improve patient outcomes."

The state Department of Administration and the Montana University System were instrumental in developing the URx program in 2010 and were the first employers in Montana to embrace and implement the pharmacy management program.

The program, now managed by the Montana Association of Health Care Purchasers (MAHCP), included the creation of five basic tiers of medications to encourage employees and their physicians to increase their use of prescriptions that provide the best opportunity for improved health outcomes and best overall net cost. As a result, the program has reduced pharmacy spending by 20 to 25% compared to previous pharmacy programs.

"Getting national attention for our URx program is just another sign that Montana is doing something right about health care costs," said Governor Schweitzer.


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