Jun 21, 2019

Why CVS is worried about Amazon

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals

A lawsuit filed by CVS against a former employee suggests that major industry players are more worried about Amazon's foray into health care than they initially let on, CNBC reports.

What's happening: Amazon gained a pharmacy arm when it acquired PillPack, and it's also part of the trio that has formed Haven.

  • UnitedHealth has also sued a former employee for attempting to join Haven.

The incumbent companies are worried that Amazon could negotiate directly with insurers, cutting out the need for pharmacy benefit managers.

  • CVS' PBM arm made up about 60% of its overall revenues in 2018.
  • "Given its robust infrastructure, operational capacity, and distribution reach, Amazon-PillPack is uniquely positioned to negotiate directly with payers (insurers) and displace CVS Caremark's mail-based services," CVS argued in a lawsuit to prevent a former employee from working for PillPack.

What's next: CNBC reported last month that there have been talks between PillPack and Blue Cross Blue Shield.

The other side: "It is important to keep in mind that what's being reported here is another company's speculation about our business strategy for a lawsuit to which neither Amazon nor PillPack is a party," a PillPack spokesperson told CNBC.

Go deeper: Read CVS' lawsuit

Go deeper

Biden formally secures Democratic presidential nomination

Joe Biden speaks at Delaware State University's student cente on June 5. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden became the formal Democratic presidential nominee on Friday evening, per AP.

The big picture: Biden has been the presumptive frontrunner to take on President Trump since Sen. Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign in early April.

Updated 8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 6,724.516 — Total deaths: 394,018 — Total recoveries — 2,996,832Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 1,894,753 — Total deaths: 109,042 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: WHCA president says White House violated social-distancing guidelines to make reporters "a prop" — Jailing practices contribute to spread.
  4. Sports: How coronavirus could reshuffle the sports calendar.
  5. Jobs: Better-than-expected jobs report boosts stock market.
  6. Media: The Athletic lays off 8% of staff, implements company-wide pay cut.

Scoop: German foreign minister to travel to Israel with warning on annexation

Heiko Maas. Photo: Michael Kappeler/picture alliance via Getty Images

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas is expected to travel to Israel next week to warn that there will be consequences if Israeli leaders move forward with plans to annex parts of the West Bank, Israeli officials and European diplomats tell me.

Why it matters: Israeli and European officials agree that if Israel goes ahead with unilateral annexation, the EU will respond with sanctions.