35 years ago Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy was a small corner drug store serving the people of Flint, Michigan. Today Diplomat has corporate offices located in Swartz Creek, MI; is run by a veteran executive team, and provides medication therapy for chronically ill patients across the country. With locations in Flint, Swartz Creek and Grand Rapids MI; Chicago; Ft. Lauderdale; and a national distribution center in Cleveland; Diplomat is now the largest, privately held specialty pharmacy in the nation.
“Our growth is great for our company and our employees, but it’s also good news for the people of Genesee County,” said the company’s president Phil Hagerman. “Pharmacies have a very real economic impact. 70% of the money spent at a local, independent pharmacy stays within the community. That’s a step in the right direction for Genesee County and Michigan.” The majority of Diplomat’s 300 employees live in Genesee County where unemployment numbers are some of the highest in the country.
Hagerman’s father, Dale, founded the business and ran it with the motto of: “caring for one patient at a time.” To this day that patient- centric philosophy still applies to every business decision the company makes. “We still offer our specialty patients one-to-one personalized care,” stated Hagerman. We’ve carved a niche in the healthcare business and use state of the art technology to provide personalized medication management for chronically ill patients.”
Monthly, or as necessary, Diplomat’s team of clinical pharmacists, nurses and patient care coordinators contact every Diplomat specialty patient to assess therapy progress. Diplomat’s patients have illnesses such as Oncology, Psoriasis, Multiple Sclerosis, HIV, Crohn’s Disease and Hepatitis. Patients require help with insurance hurdles, financial barriers, side effect management, injection training and compliance issues. Hagerman says that when these burdens are removed, patients are more likely to take their medications as prescribed and achieve optimal clinical outcomes.
Diplomat’s patient care model is working. Recent company surveys of patients and healthcare professionals show that 99% of Diplomat’s patients are “satisfied”, including a substantial 89% who say they are “very satisfied.” Moreover, 89% of healthcare professionals agree that “Diplomat exceeds the service levels of most other pharmacies.” And when it comes to adherence and persistency (taking the right drug at the right time over the entire course of therapy) Diplomat’s patients exceed numbers far above national percentages.
These impressive satisfaction and adherence numbers are hitting the radar screen of Managed Care Organizations, Pharmacy Benefit Managers, Employer Groups and Drug Manufactures not only in Michigan but across the country. Diplomat now has exclusive contracts with several organizations and is in negotiations with several other large groups.
“We have maximized our operations here in Michigan to care for the members of very large managed care organizations,” said Atheer Kaddis, Diplomat’s VP of Managed Care. “We continue to expand the services we offer, develop hi-touch/hi-tech electronic patient care systems and hire more staff; all with the expectation that over the next couple of years our patient volume will double.”
Keeping Patients Healthier…Longer.™