Publication Date: 

Effective December 18, 2019, Prime, our pharmacy benefit manager (PBM), has entered into a new three-year collaboration with another PBM, Express Scripts (ESI). It is designed to deliver more affordable care for clients and their members by enhancing pharmacy networks and pharmaceutical manufacturer value.

Prime and ESI issued a joint press release on December 19. See below for additional details.

Key Details

  • Prime is Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina's pharmacy benefit manager (PBM). Prime has signed an agreement with Express Scripts (ESI) to focus on enhancing pharmacy network rates and manufacturer contracting. Agreements of this type are common in the industry.
  • Prescription drug costs continue to rise at an alarming rate. The collaboration between ESI and Prime improves their ability to negotiate lower costs. By leveraging combined economies of scale, Prime can provide us with the best pricing possible and help make health care more affordable for our members.
  • Prime remains an independent, Blues-owned pharmacy benefit manager, and will retain control of all critical functions.
  • Pharmacies currently in Prime's networks will remain in-network.

We will continue to offer a competitive pharmacy benefit program for our customers in 2020 and beyond. We encourage our clients to consider Blue + Prime in all future business opportunities.