Infusion Express opens local clinic
Company chose Chester County for expansion due to its close ties with Cerner. It plans to aggressively expand in the coming years
TREDYFFRIN » A national drug infusion center with strong ties to one of Chester County’s largest employers is opening a location in the Malvern area.
Kansas City-based Infusion Express held a ribbon cutting Tuesday on its eighth center, this one on East Swedesford Road in the Arbor Ridge office plaza.
Infusion Express clinics deliver clinically necessary drug treatments for patients who suffer from disorders such as Crohn’s Disease, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, allergic asthma, plaque psoriasis and lupus. Infusion Express also provides treatments for vitamin and mineral deficiencies, Lyme disease, IV immunoglobulin and other blood disorders.
They are not to be confused with dialysis centers where patients with kidney failure go to have toxins cleared from their bodies.
“We’re the opposite,” Infusion Express CEO Don Peterson explained. “They take the bad stuff out, we put the good stuff in.”
With locations open in Kansas, Missouri and now in the Philadelphia region, Infusion Express plans to open new locations soon in California and Illinois.
“We hope to become the DaVita of infusions,” Peterson said, referring to the national leader in dialysis centers.
“We hope to become the DaVita of infusions.” – Infusion Express CEO Don Peterson, referring to the national leader in dialysis centers
It wasn’t by accident that Infusion Express opened its first Pennsylvania center in Malvern. It had formed a relationship with Cerner, the Kansas City-based health care technology company that has a large presence in Chester County.
In January, Cerner contracted with Infusion Express as a direct provider of IV therapy services for its health plan members in Kansas City.
The Malvern clinic opening is an extension of that relationship, Peterson said, noting that Infusion Express contracts with self-insured employers and most health plans as an in-network provider.
“They said, ‘have you guys ever thought about opening in the Philadelphia area,’” Peterson recalled, “and we said, ‘you know, that might be a great idea.’”
The company, founded in 2012, plans to open two or three more locations in the Philadelphia area in the next two years and will expand to New York, Washington, D.C., and up and down the East Coast, the CEO added.
“We’ve been growing 12 percent a month since we started,” Peterson said.
The clinics offer companies price breaks compared to hospital operations while improving service to users, Peterson said. Until now, patients with autoimmune disorders and other chronic conditions who need regular drug infusion treatments had just two choices: a hospital or, less frequently, a physician’s office.
An average “patient encounter” at one of the clinics is $4,000 to $5,000, but at a hospital it is two or three times as much, Peterson said.
“For a self-insured company, the difference is dramatic,” he noted.
About 1.5 to 2 percent of the population has a chronic condition for which there is no cure; their only option to live normally is to get a drug infusion on a regular schedule. But sessions take two to five hours, which is why Infusion Express clinics offer private treatment areas with internet connections and big screen TVs. Flexible hours, including evenings and Saturdays, are available.
“It takes away a lot of time from their work and families,” said Peterson. “With this, they can come in late in the day and set up (their treatment area) like an office.”
On the Web: www. infusionexpress.com
To contact Business Editor Brian McCullough, call 610-235-2655 or send an email to bmccullough@ dailylocal.com.
Founder and CEO Don Peterson of Infusion Express, a patient-centered alternative to hospital infusion centers, is shown at a new location near Malvern.
Nurse Taryn Marais prepares an IV pump at Infusion Express, a patient-centered alternative to hospital infusion centers in Tredyffrin.
Nurse Taryn Marais Joanna Berry, patient advocate; Janet Ink, vice-president of operations; Founder Don Peterson; and Octavio Gonzalez, director of business development at Infusion Express, gather for a photo.
An IV pump is shown at Infusion Express, a patientcentered alternative to hospital infusion centers in Tredyffrin.