When administrators at Henry Ford Medical Group agreed to provide free cancer treatment for about a dozen uninsured Detroit-area patients, they never expected it would cost $3 million. Exasperated, they took out their calculators to figure out what made the care so expensive.
CEO Power Panel: Health systems see drugs as fastest-growing expense
For his part, Fifer said he thinks 2018 will bring more examples of providers turning to innovative partnerships to tackle rising drug costs. But he's not sure they'll be able to stem the tide on their own, given the sheer complexity of the problem, and especially as drugmakers argue that high prices are necessary to fund research and development.
Drug prices at Texas Health Resources' acute-care settings increased by 8% last year, and Barclay Berdan, CEO of the Arlington, Texas-based system, doesn't expect that will change much this year. He said he'll be watching the four health systems' efforts to launch a drug company, but cautioned it's going to be challenging to make headway.
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