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SPS TO PROCESS FOR PCS IN DISTRIBUTION OF NEW DRUG FOR MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS

 RIVERWOODS, Ill., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- SPS Transaction Services, Inc. (NYSE: PAY) announced today an agreement with PCS Health Systems, Inc., to provide processing services to facilitate the distribution of Betaseron(R) (Interferon beta-1b), the new drug marketed by Berlex Laboratories for the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis.
 SPS will implement an innovative system that enables qualified patients to obtain the medication while awaiting reimbursement from their insurance companies.
 Betaseron is the first medication to be found effective for the treatment of the approximately 150,000 people in the United States who have the relapsing-remitting form of Multiple Sclerosis. The medication, which initially will be in limited supply, will cost approximately $1,000 for a month's supply.
 Berlex sought the assistance of PCS, a provider of managed prescription care services, to help with the distribution of Betaseron to the patients for whom the drug eventually will be prescribed. A card will serve as the method for identifying Betaseron recipients, filling their prescriptions, and ensuring fair distribution of the drug. SPS was selected to provide the processing program to facilitate the distribution of the drug.
 "SPS is excited to be working with companies of Berlex's and PCS's stature," said Robert W. Archer, SPS vice president of sales. "The Betaseron card system is a breakthrough in the distribution of high cost medications. As companies like Berlex and PCS continue to meet the changing needs of the pharmaceutical and health care industry, SPS will be well-positioned to expand its presence in this important industry segment with innovative programs."
 According to PCS, SPS was contacted because of its proven track record in providing customized transaction processing and credit solutions for a variety of clients.
 "We turned to SPS because of its expertise in developing credit programs that are tailored to meet specific client needs," said Michael Stanfill, PCS executive vice president and chief financial officer. "We felt that not only would SPS understand the unique challenges facing Berlex and PCS, but it would also deliver a high-quality, cost-effective system to meet those challenges."
 Berlex, a U.S. subsidiary of German pharmaceutical giant Schering A.G., developed Betaseron for the treatment of relapsing-remitting Multiple Sclerosis. The first drug of its kind, Betaseron was approved in just one year by the FDA.
 PCS, a subsidiary of the McKesson Corp. (NYSE: MCK), is the nation's leading provider of managed prescription drug programs, with more than 42 million people currently receiving services.
 SPS Transaction Services, Inc., headquartered in Riverwoods, Ill., is a full-service provider of electronic transaction processing, private label credit and operational outsourcing services. Its principal operating subsidiaries are SPS Payment Systems, Inc. and Hurley State Bank. SPS Transaction Services, Inc., is a majority-owned subsidiary of Dean Witter, Discover & Co. and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol PAY.
 -0- 10/12/93
 /CONTACT: Chris Kircher of Hill and Knowlton, Inc., 212-697-5600, or Jo Ann Seager of SPS Payment Systems, Inc., 708-405-3868/
 (PAY MCK)


CO: SPS Transaction Services, Inc.; PCS Health Systems, Inc. ST: Illinois IN: HEA SU:

CK -- NY100 -- 1297 10/12/93 16:44 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 12, 1993
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