The Weekly Roundup: Ripe for Disruption? (3.08.19)

March 08, 2019 | Pamela Youngberg

After the acquisition of PillPack last year, Amazon has flown fairly low on the radar when it comes to its potential pharmacy business. Last week, however, the firm announced the hire of Nader Kabbani to run its fledgling pharmacy venture. Will the same Amazon executive who led Kindle to disrupt traditional book sales be the right fit for the new role? Possibly—and he’s not alone. In June, the Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase venture was placed under the leadership of someone who has never run a healthcare system. The trend may well point to an industry “ripe for disruption,” according to this contributor to Forbes. Meanwhile, unsealed testimony in an employee non-compete suit last week provided some interesting insight into the mission of Haven, formerly TCORP062018 (the not-so-sexy name the Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase healthcare entity had been using until this week): make health insurance intelligible. Chief operating officer, Jack Stoddard, revealed that the startup is wrestling with some familiar issues: the opacity of the insurance system, the role of PBMs, what data is needed for analysis (of both pricing and patient outcomes), and how to make sure patients take their meds as directed—all-too-familiar territory, yes?

Here are a few other stories that might be of interest:

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Pamela Youngberg

Before she came to Smart-Fill, Pamela developed marketing strategy and content for a range of technology start-ups and large-cap enterprises. Outside the office, she's into cycling, renaissance history, cooking, and exploring the outdoors in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

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