Yesterday, the Pharmacy Benefit Manager Medco announced an agreement to merge with Express Scripts. At the same time, Medco indicated that it will not renew its contract to provide pharmacy benefits administration services to UnitedHealthcare customers. The UHC/Medco contract ends December 31, 2012 and includes a transition period thereafter.

United Healthcare is prepared to transition services currently handled by Medco to UnitedHealth Group’s in-house PBM, Prescription Solutions by OptumRx, when the Medco contract ends. This change will not occur for more than a year, and until that time it will be business as usual for UnitedHealthcare customers and their employees, who should continue to use their pharmacy benefits as they have been.

United Healthcare says it is confident about all that this change will offer UnitedHealthcare customers. OptumRx has made significant investments in its infrastructure and technology to expand its capacity and strengthen its operations for continued growth. United Healthcare will bring to bear the full resources of UnitedHealth Group to ensure a smooth and successful transition.

We at SB&K Benefits, L.L.C. will be watching this transition closely.