Home infusion

Thursday, July 31, 2008

DEERFIELD, Ill.--Walgreens expanded its home infusion footprint in June when it acquired Louisville, Ky.-based Express Scripts’ home infusion business for an undisclosed amount.

Walgreens’ home infusion division, OptionCare, will pick up 12 locations in Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and Tennessee. The pharmacies currently operate under Express Script’s wholly-owned subsidiary CuraScript.

A recent Frost & Sullivan report puts the home infusion market at $4 billion to $6 billion annually with the biggest players-Coram, OptionCare, Critical Care Systems and Critical HomeCare Solutions- comprising only about 25% of the overall market.

“Three quarters of this nut is made up of about 1,200 other providers,” said Jonathan Sadock, CEO of Paragon Ventures in Philadelphia. “So the opportunities for continued consolidation remain strong.”

Walgreens made a big splash last July when it acquired industry giant OptionCare for $850 million, a move that positioned Walgreens directly behind home infusion leader Coram. In October, Apria bought Coram for $350 million (See HME News, December 2007).

“We see home infusion as a growing market,” said Michael Polzin, a Walgreens spokesman. “We are going to continue to look to offer more services to more patients in this area.”