GoodRx CEO: 'We're trying to make health care act like every other industry'

·Senior Reporter
·2-min read

GoodRx (GDRX) released a report Tuesday showing that the company has contributed to $30 billion in savings for customers.

Co-CEO Doug Hirsch told Yahoo Finance the report also shows how the company's discounts have enabled low-income patients to fill rather than skip their prescriptions and by freeing up cash for other necessities. 

"We're trying to make health care act like every other industry, but it's so so hard because of the confusing nature of our system. But we think we've made a lot of great progress," Hirsch said.

In a recent interview, Thomas Goetz, chief of research at GoodRx, told Yahoo Finance the report was a way to understand the downstream impacts of the money saved through the discount program.

"We used a framework that is used by drug companies when they study, when they have a new drug coming to market, and they want to understand what are the possible savings if we can bring this drug to market and then avoid hospitalizations and surgeries and death," Goetz said, describing what the drug industry calls the "value add proposition."

This is the "economic impact of and health care impact of an intervention," Goetz added.

Goetz said the data and insights its gleaned in its 10 years are key in growing its prescription business as well as its ability to support its telehealth and educational platforms. 

"What's been most compelling, I think, in understanding these systemic issues, is our ability to tap into other data sources and do comparisons," Goetz said.

"We've gone through this process of finding sources that we can work with and collaborate with and licensed datasets — all depersonalized, all aggregated. Finally, we've been, after years really trying to hunt down this information, we now have a basket of average or typical copays, and so then we're able to compare our prices against a typical insurance price," Goetz said.

It's not perfect, and the goal of the company was always to be able to be a personalized price comparison tool, but it's better than the access to data a decade ago, Hirsch said.

And helping to remind individuals when its time to refill or that they have not yet filled a prescription from a virtual visit, or other proactive efforts can go a long way in helping overall health costs, Hirsch said.

"We think that a more anticipatory health system is the best design," he said.

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