Blog, The Hospital Finance Podcast®

The Impact of Medication Adherence on Healthcare Economics [PODCAST]

besler insights blog corner graphic

In this episode, we’re pleased to welcome Stacey Wasserman, Chief Business Officer at Medisafe, to discuss the impact of medication adherence on healthcare economics. 

Learn how to listen to The Hospital Finance Podcast® on your mobile device.

Highlights of this episode include:

  • About Medisafe  
  • Challenges with medication adherence that lead patients to higher utilization of costly care services
  • How improving patients’ medication adherence can reduce the volume of their medical claims
  • How reducing the total volume of medical claims can impact various stakeholders
  • The outcomes as a result of improved adherence for specific conditions, like epilepsy and multiple sclerosis
  • How Medisafe supports patients

Kelly Wisness: Hi, this is Kelly Wisness. Welcome back to the award-winning Hospital Finance Podcast. We’re pleased to welcome Stacey Wasserman. Stacey is the Chief Business Officer at Medisafe, a leading digital therapeutic companion company helping patients manage their treatment journey and medication therapies. With decades of experience in life sciences at the intersection of healthcare technology, data, and artificial intelligence, she has successfully built and led global teams in commercialization, business development, and strategy among other core business units. She has extensive experience in driving insights and developing solutions for life sciences research, development, and commercialization activities as well as for payer and provider organizations. Prior to Medisafe, Stacey served as Chief Revenue Officer for BrightInsight and Chief Commercial Officer with Genuity Science. In this episode, we’re discussing the impact of medication adherence on healthcare economics. Thank you for joining us today, Stacey.

Stacey Wasserman: Thank you, Kelly. Happy to be here.

Kelly: Well, great. Well, let’s jump in. Can you tell us about Medisafe and your role as chief business officer?

Stacey: Absolutely. You gave a little bit of an introduction to Medisafe, but for folks who are not familiar with Medisafe, we are a digital medication management solution. So, patients on our platform manage their holistic healthcare, right? So, they manage everything from their full medicine cabinet as well as appointments and health trackers that really allow them to be smarter about the way they manage their health. We also work with our pharmaceutical partners who want to also have sort of a connected health platform that helps them to support patients and caregivers and providers to provide the best patient engagement experience, which keeps patients adherent and persistent to their medication, which leads to improved outcomes. So, we have about 11 million people on the Medisafe platform today. We’re managing billions of medication doses every year. And we’re very proud of the fact that we are now also ISO 27001 and ISO 13485 certified, meaning we’re also building regulated digital health solutions and software as a medical device.

Kelly: That’s wonderful. Thank you. What are some of the challenges with medication adherence that lead patients to higher utilization of costly care services?

Stacey: Sure. So, we understand that when patients use their medications properly, they actually work. But when patients don’t take their medications as prescribed or they’re not adherent to their medications, it can often lead to a variety of challenges which lead to what I’ll call costly services, things like ER visits, ambulance rides, outpatient visits. So, we understand that many patients are living with multiple conditions. They have many comorbid conditions. They’re on concomitant medications. The average patient on Medisafe is taking six or more medications, so there’s issues with them staying compliant to all those medications. When they don’t use their medications appropriately, we sometimes see outcomes that are less than optimal. And it leads to these events that are quite costly to the healthcare system because patients aren’t using the medications as prescribed. And we see a lot of reasons why patients are not adherent to their medications. Sometimes they’re just forgetful or sometimes they just don’t have all the medication on hand. It may be expensive. So, there are a lot of reasons why patients can be non-adherent to their medication, but really what leads to these events that cost the healthcare system quite a bit of money and are avoidable, which is what we’re trying to solve for.

Kelly: Right. Very interesting. Can you explain how improving patients’ medication adherence can reduce the volume of their medical claims?

Stacey: Sure. So, as we said, when patients are adherent to their medication, they tend to not have these emergency-type visits. So, we all know that emergency room visits are very costly. When patients are using their medications properly, we see that we can avoid these events. So, they’re better equipped to manage their healthcare. They control their symptoms. They control the risk of complications of their chronic diseases. We can think about– let’s take patients with diabetes. If we can increase their medication adherence, they’re more likely to maintain their blood glucose levels within target ranges. They’re more likely to reduce the risk of complications, like glycemic events, kidney disease, neuropathy, and a whole host of other events. And so if we can keep them adherent to their medication and using their medications as prescribed, they’re likely to prevent some of these events from occurring and they’re managing their healthcare just better, which leads to better outcomes but lower costs across the board.

Kelly: That makes a lot of sense, Stacey. How does reducing the total volume of medical claims impact various stakeholders, including patients, providers, payers, and pharmaceutical companies?

Stacey: Yeah. Thanks, Kelly. When patients are adherent or manage their medications appropriately, it actually is a benefit to all the stakeholders in healthcare. So first and foremost, obviously, we care about patients. But by providing them a digital tool like Medisafe where they can manage multiple conditions, multiple medications, they can manage their healthcare and they’re going to have better outcomes, right? They’re going to feel better. They’re going to get better. They’re going to stay better. And so their overall outcomes are improved. What that means for providers is that they have patients who are better managed, so they’re reducing the number of emergency visits and things like that. So, providers are happy when their patients are adherent because then they have less of these complications to deal with. For payers, obviously, we know that when patients take their medications appropriately, they work. And so that reduces that utilization of costly care services like we talked about, like emergency room visits. And then finally, for our pharma partners or for pharma companies, when their medications get used properly and they work, they obviously see better utilization of their drugs, but it just shows that their drugs do manage disease and work better when they’re taken appropriately. And so we work with our partners to make sure that they can provide services to their patients to keep them adherent and compliant so that the drugs work properly. And so it’s a win for everyone, right? The pharma company has drugs that work better. They work the way they’re meant to work. Patients stay healthier, so providers are not forced into situations where they’re always trying to manage the next crisis. And then payers see an overall reduced cost of care for their patients or the members that they’re managing.

Kelly: That makes total sense to me. What are some of the outcomes you’ve seen as a result for improved adherence for specific conditions, like epilepsy and multiple sclerosis?

Stacey: Yes. So recently, we decided to take a look at a few chronic conditions to look at how patients managed their disease before using Medisafe and once they got onto Medisafe’s medication management platform. And so we looked at epilepsy and MS. In epilepsy, we actually saw a close to 30% reduction in total medical claims. So, we saw a 20% reduction which was translated into a 36% reduction in ER visits, a 45% reduction in ambulance visits. So, we saw really some of these costly events going down precipitously. And then in MS, we saw even a further reduction. We saw a 34% reduction in total medical claims which was a result of a 63% reduction in ER visits for these patients and a 34% reduction in outpatient visits. So, when patients have the right digital tool to manage their healthcare, manage their medications, stay adherent and persistent to their medications, we see that the overall cost of care is reduced.

Kelly: Those are outstanding outcomes. What are some of the different things that Medisafe supports patients in that help to mitigate the need for costly care services, like ER visits, ambulance visits, and outpatient visits?

Stacey: So, the Medisafe platform makes healthcare just more accessible, easy to navigate. And we actually make it a very personalized experience. So, through the use of behavioral interventions and artificial intelligence, we make sure that we reach patients where they are in their journey and make sure that we are providing them with the right educational material, the right resources so that they can manage their healthcare most efficiently, and actually provide them the best overall experience as a patient. So patients can use Medisafe to track their medications, sign up for discount programs and financial assistance. They can order refill medications through the app. They can arrange transportation. Think about all the things that a patient is managing, especially when a patient, as I said, is, many times, managing multiple conditions and multiple medications. This gives them a way to handle it and manage it all in one place. And then, as I mentioned, our AI-driven, personalized user interface creates that very tailored contextual experience for each user when it comes to educational content, whether that’s videos or articles that help them understand their condition, understand their medications. And then just another exciting addition, something that we added this year, is a partnership with YourCoach. Patients now have access to a network of vetted and trained health coaches that provide customized and cross-specialty health support as part of an integrated patient support program. So, think about it. We’re all busy, we all have a lot going on in our lives, and this is just another thing that we have to think about, right? So now in the palm of your hand are all the resources that you need to keep yourself healthy.

Kelly: Sounds like y’all are doing a lot. Thank you. And thank you so much for joining us today, Stacey, and for sharing your insights on the impact of medication adherence on healthcare economics.

Stacey: Thank you, Kelly. It was a pleasure to be here. And if anyone is interested in more information, happy to follow up with you. You can certainly check us out on our website at You can send us an email at Or if you’d like to reach me directly, please feel free to drop me an email at

Kelly: Great. Thanks, Stacey, so much for providing that. And thank you all for joining us for this episode of The Hospital Finance Podcast. Until next time…

[music] This concludes today’s episode of the Hospital Finance Podcast. For show notes and additional resources to help you protect and enhance revenue at your hospital, visit The Hospital Finance Podcast is a production of BESLER | SMART ABOUT REVENUE, TENACIOUS ABOUT RESULTS.


If you have a topic that you’d like us to discuss on the Hospital Finance podcast or if you’d like to be a guest, drop us a line at

The Hospital Finance Podcast


SUBSCRIBE for Weekly Insider Updates

  • Podcast Alerts
  • Healthcare Finance News
  • Upcoming Webinars

By submitting your email address, you are agreeing to receive email communications from BESLER.

BESLER respects your privacy and will never sell or distribute your contact information as detailed in our Privacy Policy.


Partner with BESLER for Proven Solutions.