Merck and Premier collaborate to enhance patient care at reduced cost


US-based pharmaceutical company Merck has expanded its collaboration with healthcare company Premier to jointly develop and test solutions that would help improve patient care and wellness while reducing healthcare costs.

As part of the deal, the companies have launched two new projects, a preventive care model that aims to improve adolescent and adult vaccination rates, and a chronic disease model that includes focus on type 2 diabetes patients at a risk of hypoglycemia, in addition to osteoporosis identification and treatment.

Premier chief health information officer Dr Mimi Huizinga said: “Our expanded collaboration allows us to more effectively support health systems and clinicians that are evolving from volume to value-based models, but lack adequate prevention and wellness solutions.

“We’ve been working with Merck to design data-driven interventions for some of the top population health challenges facing our country, and we’re eager to start testing them in the real world.”

Merck and Premier are currently developing plans with interested health systems to test the two models on the frontline in real-life settings.

The vaccination model will help calculate vaccination rates, and provide performance reports and education to enable providers to increase vaccination levels among adults and adolescents.

"We’ve been working with Merck to design data-driven interventions for some of the top population health challenges facing our country, and we’re eager to start testing them in the real world."

The chronic care model currently targets two major disease areas, osteoporosis and type 2 diabetes.

The two companies will develop core sets of measures for patients at risk for these conditions across several sites of care.

In the case of both disease areas, the organisations will use a cloud-based application to support guideline-based care to the patients.

Merck strategy and commercial model innovation associate vice-president Lisa French said: “Chronic diseases account for the vast majority of healthcare costs in the US and vaccination rates for adults and adolescents are low, leaving millions of Americans unprotected from preventable diseases.

“Developing prevention programmes and other interventions that health systems can implement as part of their population health management strategies can go a long way toward helping improve patient care and wellness.”

The vaccination and chronic care model solutions will be tested within volunteer member health systems of Premier.