Pills leaning against coins"While it is true that specialty claims account for the largest chunk of spend, there are processes and programs available today that can assist in insulating the plan from increasing spend over time," says Bradley Nelson.

Exorbitant drug prices continue to vex employees and employers. Legislators at the federal and state levels have thus far been unable to agree on any significant fixes to rein in high prices, leaving employers and their benefits partners looking for creative solutions to ease the pain.

Of course, if there were one single solution to curbing pharmacy costs, we'd see it spread like wildfire across the benefits industry. Instead, there are myriad tactics at play, some more impactful than others. Understanding the pros and cons of each, and whether they're a fit for a particular company, can be difficult.

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Emily Payne

Emily Payne is director, content analytics for ALM's Business & Finance Markets and former managing editor for BenefitsPRO. A Wisconsin native, she has spent the past decade writing and editing for various athletic and fitness publications. She holds an English degree and Business certificate from the University of Wisconsin.