Humana has acquired Enclara Healthcare, the country’s largest hospice pharmacy and PBM, according to several news reports.
The terms of the deal have not been disclosed. The acquisition, expected to close in the first half of 2020, will also include the acquisition of Enclara Pharmacia, GuidantRx, and Avanti Health Care Services.
Enclara, which is based in Philadelphia, was founded by Andy Horowitz.
“Enclara represents a logical extension of Humana Pharmacy’s strategy given the company’s unique ability to play a role in advanced illness care and supplement our existing care delivery system,” said Scott Greenwell, president of Humana’s PBM arm, Humana Pharmacy Solutions, in a statement that was in FierceHealthcare's story about the acquisition
In a release announcing the deal Monday, Humana said that it enables the insurer to cover pharmacy-related needs for hospice care patients and advance technology for in-home pharmacy through improved electronic medical record connectivity.
Humana already operates Humana Pharmacy Solutions, its in-house PBM that is among nation’s largest by filled-prescriptions. The purchase of Enclara is seen as a way for Humana to shore up its position in the industry as several other insurers have either purchased or created in-house PBMs.
In just the past few years, Cigna purchased Express Scripts, and CVS merged with Aetna. In 2011 United Health Group joined its existing pharmacy and care delivery service to form OptumRX. Anthem created its own in-house PBM, IngenioRX, in 2017.
The acquisitions, mergers, and in-house creations have all but put an end to the freestanding PBM. The PBM industry has been criticized for its rebate practices and lack of transparency. The integration of insurers and and PBMs may change the target of that criticism or blunt it—or both.