Sun Life Financial Canada launches specialty drug pharmacy network

Network will help reduce overall drug claim costs  

TORONTO, July 15, 2014 /CNW/ - Announced today, Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada (Sun Life) is entering into a strategic business relationship with McKesson Canada, a leader in delivering vital medicines, supplies and information technologies, to launch the Sun Life Preferred Pharmacy Network.

Comprised of over 1,500 pharmacies across Canada, outside Quebec, this network will help employers and their employees manage the increasing claim costs of specialty medications. Sun Life plan members will benefit from reduced overall claim costs on specialty drugs and have access to medication counselling, home delivery of prescriptions and chronic disease management programs, such as those focused on diabetes, where available.

"As the leading insurance provider of group benefits, employers are turning to Sun Life to help manage the rising costs of their employee benefits plans and maintain the value of their plan," said Stuart Monteith, Senior Vice-President, Group Benefits, Sun Life Financial Canada. "Through this strategic business relationship with McKesson Canada, we are able to help employers sustain their drug plans."

The Sun Life Preferred Pharmacy Network will be available to employees who are covered under a Sun Life benefits plan and use their pay direct drug card to purchase specialty medications. These are drugs that can treat select conditions such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and hepatitis C.

"We are pleased to work with Sun Life to offer enhanced value with this innovative pharmacy network," said Alain Champagne, President, McKesson Canada. "We have always believed that patients are best served in their communities by the professional care most accessible to them: their pharmacist. Our company services the largest number of pharmacies in Canada, through which Sun Life has established its preferred pharmacy network. Sun Life plan members can access their specialty medication through the network while benefitting from numerous health-related services that can have a positive impact on their overall health and wellbeing."

Plan members will have access to a dedicated website and telephone line to find a participating pharmacy in their community that carries their medication and learn more about the additional services offered through McKesson Canada and the participating pharmacies.

"The Sun Life Preferred Pharmacy Network creates a unique opportunity to build on the value pharmacists can bring in delivering personalized client-centered services," said Mark Rolnick, Assistant Vice-President, Product Development, Group Benefits, Sun Life Financial Canada. "When our customers visit a participating pharmacy, they will be helped by experienced pharmacists who can provide support to manage chronic diseases and improve their overall health."

About Sun Life Financial

Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sun Life Financial Inc. and is a member of the Sun Life Financial group of companies.

Sun Life Financial is a leading international financial services organization providing a diverse range of protection and wealth products and services to individuals and corporate customers. Sun Life Financial and its partners have operations in key markets worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China, Australia, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia and Bermuda. As of March 31, 2014 the Sun Life Financial group of companies had total assets under management of $671 billion. For more information please visit www.sunlife.com.

Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE) and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under the ticker symbol SLF.

About McKesson Canada

Founded more than 100 years ago, McKesson Canada is dedicated to delivering vital medicines, supplies and information technologies that enable the health care industry to provide patients with better, safer care. The company's solutions empower pharmacies, manufacturers, hospitals and other health care institutions by enabling them to get closer to the millions of patients they serve every single day, while contributing to the quality and safety of care in Canada.

Note to Editors: All figures in Canadian dollars.

SOURCE Sun Life Financial Canada

For further information:

Yasna Criscione
Sun Life Financial
416-204-8108
Yasna.Criscione@sunlife.com
 
Elizabeth Huart
McKesson Canada
514-832-2587
Elizabeth.Huart@mckesson.ca