Anthem to release PBM earlier than expected: 4 things to know

Anthem will terminate its pharmacy benefit management agreement with Express Scripts in March instead of at the end of 2019, the health insurer said in its fourth quarter financial results.

Four things to know:

1. Anthem said it will begin to transition its members from Express Scripts on March 2, "due to the recent acquisition of Express Scripts by Cigna Corp.," the health insurer said. The transition period will last 12 months.

2. As a result, Anthem will accelerate the launch of its own PBM, called IngenioRx. Anthem still expects IngenioRx to generate gross annual savings of more than $4 billion.

3. In addition to its PBM announcement, Anthem said for the four months ended Dec. 31, its medical enrollment fell by 361,000 members from 40.3 million on Dec. 31, 2017. The decrease reflected declines in Anthem's footprint in the individual ACA exchanges in 2018 compared to 2017.

4. Anthem ended the fourth quarter of 2018 with $23.3 billion in operating income, up 3.8 percent from $22.4 billion in the same quarter in 2017.

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