Management of Anti-VEGF Inventory Careful Planning Avoids Unnecessary Costs.

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The treatment of retinal disease has drastically changed with the introduction of anti-VEGF injections, which not only can reduce disease progression but also can, in many cases, improve visual acuity. However, innovation came with a new set of problems. For the first time, physicians were asked to order, stock, deliver, and bill for high-priced medications through Medicare part B, a virtual first in delivering drug treatment. Unfortunately, few if any practices had the infrastructure to efficiently handle these pharmaceuticals.

Practices had to develop systems to efficiently order drugs without running large inventories and tying up capital. Billing practices needed to be developed to ensure timely payments to reduce the chance of losing money on administered drug. It seemed that the introduction of a novel treatment would not only affect patients but also have a profound impact on the way retina specialists ran their practices. In our practice, we were required to add multiple layers of control to ensure accurate monitoring of drug use. In addition to adding personnel in the billing department, we needed to train staff on ordering procedures, drug log monitoring, and inventory management, processes that came with the advent of injection therapy.