Lowering Medication Costs and Improving Access to Care for Millions

Let’s do health care differently.

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About Synergie

Synergie Medication Collective is a new medication contracting organization founded by a group of Blue Cross and Blue Shield affiliated companies to serve both Blues and select independent health plans. Synergie is focused on improving affordability and access to costly medical benefit drugs — ones that are injected or infused by a health care professional in a clinical setting — for nearly 100 million Americans.

The current medication landscape is defined by rising costs, system complexities, and misaligned financial incentives that do little to improve how people afford and access the care they need.

We’re here to change that — we’re creating a more transparent and trusted way forward for the industry.

In 2023, Synergie intends to bring to market several new product offerings, and our website will be updated to include these new offerings when announced.

Company Pillars

Synergie’s investors recognized the opportunity to make a difference for patients requiring complex and expensive treatments covered under the medical benefit. Each investor company is eager to deliver value to their respective local communities across the United States.

Synergie will deliver on this promise by:

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Improving Affordability and Access

Synergie aims to reduce medical benefit drug costs by establishing a more efficient contracting model based upon its collective reach and engagement with pharmaceutical manufacturers and other industry stakeholders. With a core philosophy that prioritizes partnership and transparency, Synergie aims to play a key role in ensuring access to affordable treatments for millions of people.

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Accelerating
Innovation

Synergie will utilize its unique footprint to accelerate the availability of transformative value-based models with our pharmaceutical manufacturer partners, investors, and other industry stakeholders to ensure the high prices being paid for the medications covered under the medical benefit are proportional to the clinical value achieved.

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Increasing
Efficiency

Synergie will improve participating health companies’ efficiency in contract negotiations and administration. This is done by creating a single point of contact for contract negotiations and related administrative functions.

Why Synergie?

A Focus on Medical Benefit Drugs

Synergie is committed to improving affordability and access to the life-saving treatments medical benefit drugs offer. Health plan members, or patients, have both medical and pharmacy benefits to cover health care costs. When it comes to medications, the medical benefit covers medications typically administered in a doctor’s office, usually in the form of infusions and injections, as opposed to the pharmacy benefit which includes medications often given to oneself, like a tablet or self-injectable medication.

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Drugs covered by the medical benefit are often high-cost treatments such as multi-million-dollar gene therapies and infusible cancer drugs. These treatments represent a substantial portion of overall drug spend, with significant growth in future spend anticipated.

Investors Delivering Value to Local Communities

Synergie’s investors recognized the opportunity to make a difference for patients requiring complex and expensive treatments covered under the medical benefit. Each investor company is eager to deliver value to their respective local communities across the United States. Synergie, an independent company, was founded for this purpose.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Association

Elevance Health

Evio Pharmacy Solutions

Founded by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Blue Shield of California, Highmark Inc., and Independence Blue Cross

Prime Therapeutics

Including Magellan Rx Management as part of Prime

And several independent health plans:

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, Blue Cross of Idaho, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City, Premera Blue Cross, Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont, and Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Synergie Leadership Team

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Jarrod Henshaw

CEO and President

Jarrod Henshaw is Synergie’s Chief Executive Officer. Jarrod has over 20 years of experience working in healthcare, specifically within the pharmaceutical supply chain, in various senior leadership roles across the pharmacy industry and private equity backed companies. He has led innovative value-based contracting for both public and private companies.

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Kelly Pokuta

Chief Trade Relations Officer

Kelly has over 30 years of healthcare leadership experience ranging from the pharmacy benefit management industry, specialty pharmacy, pharmaceutical manufacturer industry, group purchasing, and clinical practice. Most recently, Kelly held a highly strategic role, serving as the Chief Trade Relations Officer and Vice President of Trade Relations and Strategy.

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Charlie-Johnson

Charlie Johnson

General Counsel

Charlie brings 17 years of experience as a strategic business lawyer in both law firm private practice and corporate health care environments. Most recently, Charlie served as an Assistant General Counsel, where he focused on client relationships, commercial and strategic transactions, pharmaceutical supply chain and federal and state regulatory matters.

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Jo-Ellen Abou Nader

Chief Administrative Officer

Jo-Ellen has over 20 years of experience working in specialty pharmacy, clinical product solutions, and sales and account management. Most recently, Jo-Ellen led large implementations of key strategic initiatives, serving as a Vice President of Enterprise Solutions.

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Brett Sahli

Chief Analytics Officer

Brett Sahli has more than 15 years of experience in leading the strategy for pharmaceutical trade relations, health outcomes, strategic analytic services, and gene therapy. Most recently, Brett served as a dynamic Assistant Vice President of Pharmaceutical Trade Relations and led a medical drug management portfolio of products. 

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Tim Kane

Head of Trade Relations

Tim has over 30 years of experience in diverse segments of healthcare including health plans, pharmacy benefits, and pharmaceutical manufacturers. He has held leadership positions in market access, trade and distribution, operations, and national sales for manufacturers and payors. 

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Chris Ford

Chief Innovation Officer

Chris Ford has more than a decade of leadership experience in the pharmacy benefit management and specialty pharmacy space, focused on drug management strategy and product innovation. He most recently spearheaded product innovation, serving as an Assistant Vice President of Strategy.

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Governing Board of Directors

Kim-Keck

Kim Keck

Board Chairperson

Kim is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA). Prior to joining BCBSA in 2021 she served as President and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island where she led policy efforts to ensure access to quality care. Keck previously spent 28 years at Aetna in several leadership roles.

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Pete Haytaian

Board Member

Pete serves as executive vice president, Elevance Health and president, Carelon. He is responsible for the strategic direction, performance, and growth of Carelon’s healthcare services, including pharmacy, behavioral health, complex and chronic care, advanced analytics, and integrated care models. Pete formerly held the leadership roles in Elevance Health’s government and commercial businesses. 

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Mostafa Kamal

Board Member

Mostafa is the CEO of Magellan Rx, a Prime Therapeutics company. Magellan Rx is a pioneer in specialty and medical drug management and a leader in delivering pharmacy solutions to public sector state government programs, employers, and health plans. Mostafa leads Magellan Rx has accountability for Prime’s Specialty and State Government Solutions business units.

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Paul Marchetti

Board Member

Paul serves as president, CarelonRx where he is responsible for advancing an integrated, whole-person approach to pharmacy care delivery, and drives programs and strategies that lead to improved affordability and outcomes. Paul brings more than 25 years of payer and provider experience in healthcare.

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Brian Pieninck

Board Member

Brian is the President and CEO of CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield. Brian has held multiple leadership roles at CareFirst across the organization’s four Strategic Business Units and Technology and Operational Support Services. Prior to joining CareFirst, Brian held key leadership positions during a 19-year tenure at Aetna, including Director of Professional Employer Organizations, President of Southeast National Accounts, and President of the Americas for Aetna International. 

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Deborah Rice-Johnson

Board Member

Deborah is CEO of Diversified Businesses and Chief Growth Officer at Highmark, and chairperson of the Evio Pharmacy Solutions board. She brings more than 30 years of leadership at Highmark and in the health insurance industry. She has led alliances that have helped make care more affordable, create healthier outcomes, and grow the health insurance organization’s influence. 

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Hank Schlissberg

Board Member

Hank is the President and CEO of Evio. He has 20 years of health care innovation, growth, and operations experience across consulting, provider, and technology. Hank previously was a seven-year executive at DaVita across multiple entrepreneurial roles in value-based care, was a partner in McKinsey’s payor and provider practice, and Chief Growth Officer of a tech innovator in the radiology space.

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Martha-Wofford

Martha Wofford

Board Member

Martha is President and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island, and a board member for Prime Therapeutics. She has been a recognized leader in health care since 2005, spending seven years at DaVita where she led the company’s shift to value-based care and a decade at Aetna helping start up the Medicare Advantage business and leading the company’s effort to help consumers navigate the healthcare system.

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Why We are Called Synergie Medication Collective?

The name “Synergie” represents the investors’ common goal of creating value and better experiences for all. It highlights our combined effort to strengthen access, affordability, and outcomes.

“Medication Collective” further describes the company’s category and focus — the product of a group of independent companies building solutions in the medical benefit drug space.

Join the Synergie Team

Senior Director Clinical Strategy

Lead Trade Negotiator

Senior Applied Analytics Analyst

News & Media

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Announcing Synergie Medication Collective

Blue Cross Blue Shield companies form Synergie Medication Collective, a new venture to radically improve affordability and access to costly medications for millions. 

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Blues plans launch Synergie to cut costs for the priciest drugs

Synergie Medication Collective, an independent company the plans see as a novel solution to costly physician-administered drugs.

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Introducing Synergie Medication Collective

A note from Jarrod Henshaw, Synergie Chief Executive Officer. 

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