As part of the Noon Elective Seminar seroes, Dr. Michael Rigas gave a presentation on his company, KabaFusion and his career path. He was accompanied by two clerkship students, Johnny Zhou from UCSD and Ronald Vo from USC. His daughter, a second year dental student at WesternU also attended.
A couple of reflections written by student pharmacist taking the course are posted below:
Ji Eun Lee, PharmD Candidate 2020
On January 4th, Dr. Michael Rigas, a Chief Clinical Officer from KabaFusion, had a seminar called “specialty infusion pharmacy and its impact on healthcare reform.” KabaFusion is a full service infusion pharmacy found in 2010 that manages patients’ acute or chronic therapy at home and in ambulatory infusion sites. It provides a patient-focused infusion therapy with commitment to successful clinical outcomes and to work proactively with patients, physicians, and payors. Its goal is to provide comprehensive support before, during, and after infusion therapy. Kabafusion provides service to about 1,500 patients in 34 states and operates infusion pharmacies in seven states: CA, TX, MA, IL, NJ, FL, and PA. And it is contracted with all major health plans in these states.
In order to have a pharmacy like Kabafusion, it needs to have contracts and pharmacy licenses, permits, and certificates. So Dr. Michael Rigas describes his pharmacy as a combination of both business and clinical practice. He also talked about how his pharmacy deals with insurance and Medicare and he also briefly went over how to get a reimbursement.
Although he spent most of time talking about business aspect of his pharmacy, he also shared his career history. From his seminar, I have learned about a new type of pharmacy but I have also learned a lesson from his career history. The lesson is that each job is a great experience, meaning that each job built on the past experience and relationship as they are related to solving a problem or improving ongoing goals.
Jane Kim, PharmD Candidate 2020
Dr. Rigas is the owner of KabaFusion, which is a patient-focused, full-service infusion therapy pharmacy that was founded in 2010 and now has 6 pharmacies. They manage patients’ therapy both at home and in ambulatory infusion sites. KabaFusion’s mission statement is “We are guided by our commitment to successful clinical outcomes and dedicated to working proactively with patients, physicians and payors to provide comprehensive support before,during and after infusion therapy.” There are financial challenges that they face due to variance in reimbursement rates from the government and third party payors, which can lead to patients sometimes having to pay out-of-pocket for these high-cost therapies that they can’t afford to pay for. This will then lead to increase LOS and readmissions into hospitals. Therefore, HealthCare Reform is forcing development of strategies to manage infused and biologic therapies to prevent such issues. I am amazed by how much care KabaFusion has for each patient and the effort they putin to helping them, even with the challenges they face. I want to be able to be a pharmacist thathas that same heart and mentality. This was a new learned area of pharmacy, which I maypossibly consider in the future.