From a young age, Sarah McHale wanted a healthcare career. She attended Health Careers High School, a magnet school for those with a medical field interest, and before changing to Business, was pursuing a Nursing degree in college. Years later, while her mother battled ovarian and fallopian tube cancer, she had an eye-opening experience about the power of 340B drug pricing.
Her parents hit a donut hole in their insurance coverage, and they were paying out of pocket for medical treatments. They didn’t qualify for medical assistance because everything tied back to financials, and their retirement savings excluded them from help.
While spending thousands of dollars on tests and medications, Sarah’s mom got a blood clot during routine blood work and had to add a $700-a-week prescription for blood thinners to her expenses. After a pharmacist introduced Sarah’s mother to a cash card program through a local hospital, the family got 340B pricing on the drug, which reduced the cost to $50 a week out of pocket.
“When I saw that, I thought, ‘Wow, this program can be an incredible resource for the patient and their family,’” Sarah said. “That’s a big motivator as to why I get so passionate about our opportunities through this drug program.”
Sarah’s worked in the 340B space for almost nine years now. As an RxBenefits Strategic Hospital Advisor, she strategizes and partners with clients to use 340B to drive their plan to the lowest net cost. She works with a benefit advisor to learn about a plan’s challenges, and she meets with prospects and clients to discuss their 340B programs, goals, and opportunities. Delivering the best product or service to individual clients is incredibly exciting for Sarah, who always seeks to help these covered entities support their communities.
When Apexus, a national leader in 340B compliance, started offering an Advanced 340B certification, Sarah made it a goal to pass the test. The program helped her learn more about the parts of 340B she didn’t work with regularly. By participating in re-certification every two years, Sarah learns what’s new in the industry, forecasts for the industry, and how to better support clients as 340B evolves.
For others looking to enter the field, she advises staying flexible and always being ready to research. “Just because something was the set protocol or standard yesterday doesn’t mean it is today or tomorrow,” she said.
Her favorite aspect of working at RxBenefits is working closely with a team of experts. Her team had the opportunity to bond when a live webinar recording took them to a remote studio in Wisconsin. They had to deal with untrained camera operators and shared headphones, but the uncomfortable filming experience highlighted the team’s strength. “I’m so glad we did it,” Sarah said. “It was so incredibly uncomfortable and awkward, but the synergy was amazing, and the webinar turned out wonderful.”
Sarah is a mother of an 11-month-old son, 9-year-old daughter, and wife to a very supportive husband that knows way too much about 340B now. She loves being a mom and enjoying the beautiful nature surrounding their home in Bulverde, Texas. Her daughter tells people that Sarah helps people get drugs and money, and Sarah herself often says she’s “just trying to get some people drugs and money.”