MedVantx Partnership with UPMC Health Plan Improves Medication Adherence and Increases Patient Satisfaction Free First Fill Medications Given to 1 Million Patients

San Diego, CA and Pittsburgh, PA -  December 13, 2016 – MedVantx Inc. and UPMC Health Plan’s collaboration through MedVantx’s MedStart Connect program has conveniently provided free, full course samples of generic, brand-name, and over-the-counter medications in physician offices to more than one million patients. The UPMC Health Plan-sponsored program, which is now in over 250 locations with leading medical groups across western and central Pennsylvania, increased medication adherence and lowered the overall cost of care in the region. In addition to improving primary non-adherence, the program increased the likelihood that patients would fill subsequent prescriptions and improved overall patient satisfaction as well.

UPMC Health Plan has been a sponsor of the MedStart Connect program since 2003.   Working with over 1,000 physicians in Pennsylvania, MedVantx and UPMC Health Plan reduced a key gap in medication adherence — the fact that 30-50% of initial prescriptions are never filled at the pharmacy — by providing free initial medication samples at the point of care. The program has also been shown to enhance patient satisfaction levels and the medication access experience for one million Pennsylvania consumers to date. UPMC Health Plan expanded its sponsorship in 2014 to include a series of new tools designed to better engage and communicate with all patients in its service area. In addition to receiving their initial medication at the point of care, patients receive customized education materials designed to increase communication and dialog with UPMC Health Plan.   

A peer-reviewed journal article recently published in the Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy(*) concluded that a free 30-day point-of-care sample medication improved the probability of patients filling their initial prescriptions and improved adherence to those medications. There have been many other studies that link improved medication adherence with lower overall health care costs and improved quality.

The study, which was sponsored by MedVantx and independently conducted by the University of Pittsburgh, School of Pharmacy Program Evaluation and Research Unit (PERU), compared the prescription initiation and refill histories of UPMC Health Plan patients who received UPMC doctors’ offices initial 30-day samples of generic medications for treatment of chronic diseases including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes, to a group of patients receiving only electronic prescriptions.  The results reveal a robust 35% improvement in the probability of filling the first medication. 

Over time, patients who received MedVantx samples continued to fill subsequent prescriptions for medication as well. 

Health plans are continually looking for new tools to increase awareness about their services and benefits, attract new members, increase patient satisfaction, and retain their membership in an extremely complex and competitive market. “Since patient satisfaction is so closely tied to the prescription drug benefit, we are pleased to work with MedVantx to provide convenient access to medications, improve medication adherence and participate in programs designed to lower the overall cost of care,” relayed Chronis Manolis, Vice President, Pharmacy, at UPMC Health Plan.

“MedVantx is dedicated to eliminating gaps in primary medication non-adherence by ensuring patients get the proper medication in hand at the point-of-care and remain on that therapy over time through an integrated, convenient, and cost-effective program,” said Susan Hogue, RPh, MPM, Vice President of Managed Care Networks & Clinical Services at MedVantx. “We have long believed that our program improves medication adherence and reduces health care costs; this study suggests that this is indeed the case. We hope to be part of the solution for reducing the $290 billion in U.S. health care costs attributable to medication non-adherence.”   


To access the full article from the Journal of Managed Care & Speciality Pharmacy (JMCP), click here.


About MedVantx Inc.

MedVantx Inc. partners with leading health systems, pharmaceutical manufacturers and health plans to eliminate structural gaps in primary medication adherence, increase speed to therapy and consumer satisfaction and reduce overall cost of care. The Company’s proprietary medication access and management platforms include the industry's only integrated point of care to end-of-runway specialty pharmacy delivery capabilities. The Company’s pharmaceutical HUB service platform includes direct-to-patient programs (DTP), patient assistance programs (PAP), patient reimbursement (BI/BV), patient adherence programs, sampling solutions, home delivery, specialty pharmacy services and third party logistics. For company information, visit  For information on MedStart Connect, visit The company can be found on the web at

Source:  MedVantx, Inc.


About the UPMC Insurance Services Division

The UPMC Insurance Services Division is owned by UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) a world-renowned health care provider and insurer based in Pittsburgh, Pa. As a provider-led organization that is part of an integrated health care delivery system, the UPMC Insurance Services Division is committed to providing its members better health, more financial security and the peace of mind they deserve. The UPMC Insurance Services Division partners with UPMC and community network providers to produce a combination of knowledge and expertise that provides the highest quality care at the most affordable price. The UPMC Insurance Services Division – which includes UPMC Health Plan, UPMC WorkPartners, LifeSolutions, UPMC for Life, UPMC for You, UPMC for Kids, and Community Care Behavioral Health — offers a full range of group health insurance, Medicare, Special Needs, CHIP, Medical Assistance, behavioral health, employee assistance and workers' compensation products and services to more than 3 million members. For more information, visit



(*) Pringle JL, Aldridge A, Kearney SM, et al. Evaluating the Impact of Sample Medication on Subsequent Patient Adherence. Journal of Managed Care and Specialty Pharmacy. 2016;22(11).