For the debut of its first pharmacy in New York, Genoa brought its full executive team to the ribbon-cutting ceremony. That spoke volumes about the event’s significance for the company.
Based in Tukwila, Wash., Genoa specializes in behavioral health pharmacy services. It now has 330 locations in community mental health and social services centers across the country.
The new pharmacy, due to go into operation shortly, is located on Long Island at Family Service League’s social services center in Bay Shore, N.Y. Attending the Sept. 28 grand opening, besides Genoa and Family Service League executives, were a phalanx of local officials, including New York State Sen. Phil Boyle (R.) and representatives for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York State Assemblyman Phil Ramos (D.).
“New York is the 41st state where we have a pharmacy, ” Genoa CEO John Figueroa said at the press conference. “But as you can see by our presence here today, it really is a milestone for Genoa to be in New York state.”
He noted that the opening of Genoa’s 300th location this spring in Florida was the only other launch event that prompted the company to bring its entire management team. “We figured the milestone in New York was just as important for all of us to be together,” he said.
Yet Figueroa cited another milestone for the company: a research study finding that Genoa’s integrated care model achieves higher medication adherence rates than community pharmacies. Published in the Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy, the study also found lower rates of hospitalization and less use of emergency rooms for patients visiting its on-site pharmacies.
“The results were unbelievable, even from our perspective,” Figueroa said. “The study came out on a Monday or Tuesday, and we got a call from the largest commercial payer on Wednesday asking us if we would come in and have a meeting regarding the findings of the study. And since then, I believe we’ve had interactions with 20 or so states that are also putting two and two together on the value of integrated care.”
Comparing Rx adherence rates and outcomes data of patients who used Genoa pharmacies and those who used community pharmacies, researchers found that Genoa patients had a 96% adherence rate. Genoa patients also had a 40% lower rate of behavioral health-related hospitalizations and an 18% lower rate of behavioral health-related ER visits. And based on costs for hospitalizations and ER visits, cost avoidance estimates for Genoa patients were about $58 a member per month, for a total estimated savings of $230,000 for the Genoa patients studied in the 13-month period.
“I really think this is the milestone that hits it home for us,” Figueroa said. “We have known for 16 years that integrated health care with wonderful partners makes a tremendous impact on the consumers that we take care of. We see it every single day.