Humana and Amgen are collaborating on an effort to use data and real-world evidence to find ways to improve health outcomes and improve provider efficiency.

The agreement between Humana, a health plan administrator, and Amgen, a biotechnology company, will initially focus on six medical conditions that are widespread and expensive to treat. First to be studied by the initiative are cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, neurologic disorders, inflammatory diseases and cancer.

More such projects are expected over the term of the agreement, with the expectation that findings will bring value to both companies. Executives say the collaboration aims to increase value to patients and the healthcare system by working to improve quality and outcomes “in the context of total healthcare costs.”

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Efforts will build on the real-world healthcare experiences of Humana’s 13 million members. Researchers are expected to combine available sources of real-world evidence with data from wearable technology, digital apps and Bluetooth-enabled drug delivery devices; observational studies also are planned.

Researchers hope to identify patients whose serious medical conditions are likely to result in an adverse patient outcome—working with their medical data, they hope to develop algorithms that can predict risk and prompt early interventions. Executives from both companies also say they will study specific therapeutic areas, from defining the burden of osteoporatic fractures to understanding the impact of wearable technology on medication adherence for inflammatory diseases.

"It is our hope that this collaboration with Humana, a first of its kind for Amgen, will cultivate value-based, integrated approaches to care that will focus on patients and benefit the healthcare system more broadly," says Joshua Ofman, MD, senior vice president of global value, access and policy at Amgen.

"We hope this research results in new tools and technology that support our provider partners who are on the journey to population health and value-based care," adds Laura Happe, chief pharmacy officer for Humana.

Amgen and Humana have long experience in value-based initiatives. Globally, Amgen has engaged in more than 75 distinct value-based programs that have focused on improving clinical outcomes, patient experience and population health. Its value-based projects span disease state collaborations, risk sharing, cost-cap guarantee, pay-for-performance and outcomes-based agreements.

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