Walmart Increases Self-Funded Employer Access to Cost Effective Care

Self-insured employers will have access to Walmart’s retail and specialty pharmacy services, prescription drugs, telehealth services, optical care, over the counter services, and community health centers.

Highlights Include:

LOWER BRANDED INSULIN COSTS: Analog insulin at 58 to 75 percent off the price of branded insulin

NO UP FRONT FEES or fees per employee per month

CASH PAY PLAN: The program pays hospitals and health systems up front for surgeries

Source: Walmart

 By Victoria Bailey

October 18, 2021 – Walmart has partnered with a digital platform to provide self-funded employers and their employees with access to cost-effective healthcare.

Employers across the country will be able to utilize Walmart’s healthcare offerings and provide their employees with access to affordable care options.

“We are committed to providing care to customers and the communities we serve through an integrated, omnichannel approach that improves engagement, health equity, and outcomes,” Cheryl Pegus, MD, executive vice president of health and wellness at Walmart, stated in the press release.

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“Most of America lives within 10 miles of a Walmart, which makes us uniquely positioned to deliver the right care at the right time in the right way.”

Self-insured employers will have access to Walmart’s retail and specialty pharmacy services, prescription drugs, telehealth services, optical care, over the counter services, and community health centers. Certain Walmart locations offer a number of immunizations and COVID-19 drive-thru testing, as well.

In addition to the partnership, Walmart recently launched its own brand of analog insulin which may save customers 58 to 75 percent off the price of branded insulin, increasing access to affordable chronic disease management.

Half of Americans are on employer-sponsored health plans, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Single coverage annual premiums were over $7,000 in 2020, with family coverage costing $21,342 per year. These costs continue to rise with little change to care quality.

Walmart and Transcarent aim to provide transparent healthcare costs to members and ensure they receive quality care at affordable prices.

“Together, Walmart and Transcarent have the scale and innovation required to transform the way health and care are delivered and paid for across the nation, regardless of a person’s economic or geographic situation,” Glen Tullman, chief executive officer of Transcarent, said in the press release.

With Transcarent, employers have no up-front fees or fees per employee per month. In addition, the digital platform offers a fully at-risk model for employers, according to the company. The platform also pays hospitals and health systems up front for surgeries, the press release stated.

Self-insured employers and their employees will gain access to Transcarent team members who can provide guidance with navigating and understanding healthcare options and costs. They can also assist consumers with accessing virtual and in-person care through the company’s digital options or Walmart’s in-person clinics.

It is common for self-funded employer health plans to partner with digital platforms to improve aspects like member engagement and care management.

Other companies have worked to improve employer-sponsored health benefits as well. For example, JPMorgan Chase launched a healthcare business unit to enhance benefits, promote equity, and serve as a model for other self-fund employers.

 

 

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