CVS adds 5 more solutions to its platform to assist PBM clients in managing digital health tools

CVS Pharmacy
CVS is growing its platform for pharmacy benefit management clients to manage their digital health tools. (Getty/Serenethos)

CVS Caremark is further expanding its Point Solutions Management platform, which aims to make it easier for plan sponsors to manage and contract with digital health tools. 

The pharmacy benefit manager announced it will add five more solutions to its platform, bringing the total up to 10. Point Solutions Management was first unveiled in June 2019

Sree Chaguturu, M.D., chief medical officer for Caremark, told Fierce Healthcare that the new additions reflect growing focus areas for payers and employers due to COVID-19 such as mental health, obesity and pediatrics. 

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“As we think about the last couple of months, our way of life has radically transformed,” he said. “So, we recognize that there’s an opportunity to build on the success of Point Solutions Management.” 

RELATED: CVS launching platform to help employers, universities safely reopen amid COVID-19

The new solutions coming to the platform are: 

  • Daylight: An app from Big Health that offers digital cognitive behavioral therapy for people with anxiety. 

  • Naturally Slim: An online education program that offers personalized lessons on nutrition and strategies to lose weight. 

  • Vida: A weight loss program that pairs patients with one-on-one coaching through phone and video calls. 

  • Weight Watchers: This long-standing weight loss program has gone increasingly digital, offering an app that includes meal planning and recipes, fitness tracking and community support. 

  • Kurbo: A digital health platform for kids aged 8 to 17 that encourages a healthier lifestyle through education videos, games and weekly video coaching. 

These five tools join Sleepio, Hello Heart, Hinge Health, Torchlight and Whil on CVS’ platform. 

Chaguturu said the Caremark team gives each digital health tool a “rigorous” evaluation before adding any to the platform, diving into user outcomes, impact on health cost and data privacy and security measures. 

RELATED: CVS is adapting its strategy for specialty pharmacy for COVID-19. Here’s how 

Peter Hames, CEO of Big Health, which backs both Daylight and Sleepio, told Fierce Healthcare that backing from big names like CVS on these digital health solutions really highlights that they bring more to the table than just a phone app.

"These are true therapeutics," he said. "They’re not toys, they’re not apps—these are true digital therapeutics."

CVS will also then manage its clients' contracts with the digital health companies and negotiate payment rates like it would for medications and other more traditional therapies. Plan sponsors will also be able to track member eligibility in real time. 

As digital health platforms proliferate, plan sponsors have been asking for ways to cut through the noise and connect more readily with the tools and solutions that best fit their membership. A survey released last year by the Business Group on Health found that many employers find this to be a significant challenge. 

Express Scripts has launched a similar digital formulary that includes 15 solutions it’s vetted for its plan sponsors. 

Chaguturu said 1 million Caremark members have access to Point Solutions Management, and that’s only expected to grow. CVS is also continuing to evaluate where there’s a demand from plan sponsors for digital tools for the future. 

The role of digital health in managing care is not expected to slow down any time soon either, especially as the COVID-19 pandemic accelerates the use of such tools, he said. The goals of digital health and more traditional clinical care are “complementary,” he said. 

“Point solutions are a growing and critical component of an individual’s health management,” Chaguturu said. “We don’t see point solutions as replacing the need for clinicians.” 

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