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Blue Shield of California COO Sandra Clarke Joins White House Panel Hosted by President Biden’s Team on Pharmacy and Drug Cost Reforms Needed for All Americans

Discussions continue around the new prescription drug supply model announced as part of Blue Shield’s Pharmacy Care Reimagined initiative.

This story is also available in Spanish.

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Sandra Clarke, far right, alongside Mark Cuban and Alex Oshmyansky at the White House roundtable

by Sandra Clarke, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Blue Shield of California

The critical need to improve value in the pharmacy supply chain and drug pricing have been at the forefront of national conversations this past week. Blue Shield of California was honored to be included in a new discussion initiated by the Oval Office.

I am thrilled to have represented Blue Shield of California at the White House on Monday, March 4, 2024. Being invited to speak at the White House Roundtable on Lowering Drug Costs and Addressing Pharmaceutical Benefit Managers was a great testament to our company’s fierce dedication to transforming pharmacy care for our members, Californians and all Americans.

Hearing, “I’m glad someone in California is doing something” on this topic from Secretary of Health, and fellow Californian, Xavier Becerra, was a career highlight.

Blue Shield has taken bold initiatives in pharmacy through a variety of advocacy and innovation efforts, and our work to reimagine pharmacy care started long before today. The most recent step was Blue Shield’s announcement of a new prescription drug supply chain model, launching in 2025. We are proud to be an advocate for policy changes, and a pioneer in innovation and collaborations for greater value and transparency in pharmacy. Our aim is to ensure that needed medications get to the right people at the right time and at a substantially lower cost.

I am glad to have sat next to one of our collaborators in this work – Mark Cuban and Alex Oshmyansky of Cost Plus Drug Company – on the panel. We were joined by government officials and community pharmacists. I applaud the White House for including a range of stakeholders, as it will need to lean on a range of voices as they continue to develop this Task Force to meet Americans where they are with their healthcare needs.

We are at a pivotal moment in health care. It is reassuring to have conversations with agents of change about what must transform for millions of people. Everyone I spoke with – fellow panelists, regulators and state and federal government officials – had a deep knowledge of the issues at hand and wants to make a difference in the pharmacy care experience for all Americans.


I also want to thank my colleagues for lending their voices to drive awareness of this critical issue. Ahead of the White House roundtable, some of our Blue Shield executives shared their perspectives on disrupting the pharmacy model:

MedCity News

Patients Should Be at the Center of Pharmacy Care. Why Aren’t They?, by Alison Lum, vice president of Pharmacy Services, Blue Shield of California (Dec 1, 2023)

ALM Benefits Pro

Why transparency matters: helping brokers understand drug pricing, by Tim Lieb, senior vice president of Growth, Blue Shield of California (Feb 22, 2024)

Managed Healthcare Exec white

Using the Healthcare Utility Model to Manage Pharmacy Cost for Patients and Payers, by Nhi Nguyen, director and pharmacist, Blue Shield of California, with John Mbagwu, CivicaScript and Sharon Faust, Lumicera Health Services (March 4, 2024)