Private plans provide coverage to an active working population and their dependents, and to ensure members have timely access to medications they need to get them back to work as quickly as possible.
Overall, private plans offer greater coverage of innovative medicines, and in a shorter time frame than public plans. Private drug plans are offered by many employers as part of an overall compensation package and serve as a retention and productivity objective, much like a pension plan or performance bonus.
Public plans are designed to cover populations which are typically outside the workforce (seniors, disabled, unemployed).
When making benefit plan decisions, plan sponsors value reduced absenteeism and presenteeism, as well as reduced long-term and short-term disability costs. This differs from public plans which place greater value on broader social and healthcare system costs (i.e. reduced hospital stays and physician visits).