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Articles: Health

Universities are often in a unique position when it comes to managing their pharmacy benefits. Those associated with medical schools, hospital, and clinics often have affiliated pharmacies and access to staff with clinical pharmacy expertise. If an institution can fully leverage these in-house capabilities, it can have a dramatic effect on its overall pharmacy benefit budget. How to best leverage these capabilities should be considered when HR administrators selects a pharmacy benefit management (PBM) partner.

Who are you and how did you find us? That's what admissions officers at colleges and universities all over the country are asking this year as "stealth applications" proliferate.

Most higher ed institutions offer a wide variety of employee programs and benefits: health fairs, faculty and staff recognitions, tuition waivers, and more.

But are the programs at your institution reflective of current employee needs? And how can human resources professionals maximize the impact of these programs? Are there routine diagnostics to perform? Or does HR simply make a tweak here, a twist there, keeping the program objectives intact?

Recent events have understandably triggered a flurry of crisis preparedness efforts at colleges and universities across the country. Many of these institutions are today breathing easier now that they have incident response plans the size of phone books resting in drawers or populating intranets. They feel confident that in an emergency they can evacuate parties at risk in a timely organized manner — perhaps.

 

THERE IS A NEW "SIN" INDUSTRY on college campuses. It’s not beer, fast food, or tobacco. It’s water! Universities around the nation have begun to deny students the option of drinking bottled water, removing it from vending machines and campus stores.

 

ALL YEAR LONG, BUT THROUGHOUT the colder months in particular, health care needs inevitably arise. But for college students, particularly those in traditionally underserved minority groups, access to health care may be as slippery as the roads they come to school on.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT THIS COLUMN CAN touch a few nerves. Two examples of this are editorials I wrote about guns and alcohol, both of which continue to draw reader response long after they were published.

 

AS AN ENTHUSIASTIC signatory to the Amethyst Initiative, a joint statement issued by college and university presidents and chancellors urging public debate on the National Minimum Drinking Age Act, I am pleased to say the discussion is certainly underway.

 

DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THE secretary who fell asleep at work, facedown on her computer keyboard? Or maybe you heard about the employee who broke down crying in his manager's office, admitting that he needed help for a problem he had been hiding for months-his addiction to alcohol. 

 

AMERICA'S COLLEGE HEALTH systems are gravely ill. Unless faculty and campus administrators address these coverage issues, students could be one disease or accident away from losing the education for which they are paying.

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