Q: What is infusion therapy?
A: The most common type of infusion is intravenous (IV) therapy, which involves the administration of medication directly into the blood stream by a needle or catheter. It is prescribed when medications are not effective when given by an oral route. Infusion therapy is administered in a hospital, physician’s office, or a skilled nursing facility. However, patients who are able to administer their own therapy may prefer to receive their infusions at home or in an ambulatory infusion suite to accommodate their lifestyle. That is where Infusion Solutions comes in!
Q: Does a nurse come to my home for every dose?
A: A nurse usually visits your home once or twice weekly, depending on your therapy. For your first dose (either in your home or in our infusion suites), your nurse will educate you on how to administer your own infusion therapy, and make sure you are comfortable and confident in your ability to perform all the necessary tasks. A nurse will also commonly perform weekly dressing changes, draw physician ordered labs, and monitor your access site for any problems. If you have any concerns or questions regarding your therapy, please don’t hesitate to call; our nurses and pharmacists are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Q: Am I going to be home-bound?
A: No! It is always our priority to accommodate your lifestyle, and we will do everything we can to help you maintain your level of activity. Most infusion pumps are ambulatory; this means you can carry them with you anywhere in a backpack or fanny-pack. There are many types of infusion therapies, and our staff will talk you through any limitations of your particular therapy. Let us know what your expectations are, and we will help come up with solutions to make your infusion experience as convenient as possible.
Q: Does insurance cover home infusion? Are there additional out-of-pocket expenses for home infusion?
A: Virtually every insurer (commercial, Medicare, Medicaid) covers home infusion to some extent, but every insurance plan is different. Our reimbursement team will always check with your insurance company to find out what they cover, and we will tell you BEFORE your therapy begins if you are responsible for payment, and what the estimated out of pocket cost will be.
Q: Will Medicare pay for home infusion?
A: The answer is yes, but…patients must meet Medicare criteria and guidelines. Our team is familiar with this process, and we will be able to quickly determine if Medicare covers your particular infusion need. If Medicare does not cover it, all out-of-pocket expenses will be determined prior to the initiation of therapy so patients can make a choice about how to best move forward.
Q: Can I travel?
A: Almost all home infusion patients are able to travel. You need to make sure you have all necessary supplies for the length of your travel, and access to medical care if you need it while you are away. Always check with an Infusion Solutions pharmacist or nurse when planning a trip and we will do everything we can to accommodate you.
Q: What is your service territory?
A: Infusion Solutions pharmacy is located in Bellingham, WA and we serve patients in Whatcom, Skagit, Island, San Juan, and Snohomish Counties. If you live outside of that service territory, we may be able to help on a case-by-case basis, depending on the infusion need and insurance involved. Please call the office at 360-933-4892 to see if we can be of help!
Q: Will my infusion treatment interfere with other medications?
A: Our clinical infusion pharmacists will always obtain a complete medication and allergy history before starting your therapy, and make sure your treatment is safe and will not interfere with your medications. If the pharmacist notices any medications or allergies that may cause an increased risk to you, he or she will notify your physician immediately with a recommendation. The pharmacist will make sure you understand your therapy and you will have the opportunity to speak directly with the pharmacist regarding any questions or concerns you may have.
Q: How do I get additional supplies?
A: Generally, we deliver medications and supplies to your door weekly in conjunction with a nursing visit. We do our best to track your usage so we can anticipate your needs. However, to ensure that you don’t run out of your medications or supplies, please call us and let us know if you are running low on anything. We request that you give us a few days notice so we can prepare your order and schedule a delivery that is convenient for you.
Q: Who do I contact if something goes wrong?
A: For any life-threatening emergency, call 911. Other than that, Infusion Solutions is available to you 24/7 to answer any questions about your therapy, your access line, and your infusion pump (if needed). Contact your nurse or pharmacist at (360)933-4892 if there is a problem with your equipment, or if you have questions about how to administer your therapy. There may be some instances where you should call your physician, and we will help guide you in these situations.
Q: What number do I call after business hours?
A: Call our regular office number, (360)933-4892. Our answering service will contact the nurse or pharmacist on call, who will call you back within 15 minutes to assist you. We are on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Q: What is USP 797?