Latest agreement quadruples number of pharmacies in Albertsons Companies offering Genomind’s tests and services
To help address the burgeoning mental health crisis in the U.S., specially trained Jewel-Osco pharmacists will play a pivotal role in expanding access to innovative mental health resources
KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa., March 10, 2020 — Genomind®, the leading mental health company bringing precision medicine into mainstream mental health treatment, and Jewel-Osco have expanded their partnership to provide patients with increased access to pharmacogenetic testing for mental health conditions. Jewel-Osco, with pharmacies in 180 locations throughout the Chicago metropolitan area, Northwest Indiana and Iowa, now offers Genomind® Professional PGx Express™, the most advanced and comprehensive pharmacogenetic testing service to help guide mental health medication management for pharmacists and clinicians.
Albertsons Companies, one of the largest food and drug retailers in the United States, is the parent company of Jewel-Osco and previously announced a rollout of Genomind’s test services to all Pennsylvania ACME pharmacies in December. With today’s announcement, the number of pharmacies under the Albertsons umbrella offering Genomind’s test services has quadrupled to 239 locations nationwide. This expansion is of particular importance in Illinois where, as of January 1, 2020, pharmacists can administer long-acting antipsychotic and recovery medications.
Pharmacogenetics (PGx) refers to how variations in specific genes can influence response to a medication. The FDA has placed gene-specific warnings, precautions, and dosage recommendations on over 270 medications. With Genomind’s technology, pharmacists and clinicians can better partner together to personalize mental health treatment plans for their patients.
“Our expanding partnership with Albertsons Companies and their pharmacists underscores the growing demand for PGx testing and its role in helping to address patient needs in medication management for mental health,” said Shawn Patrick O’Brien, Chief Executive Officer at Genomind. “We are excited that this collaboration with the Jewel-Osco team continues to grow, contributing to a more comprehensive approach to mental health care. When there is coordinated response and support by the whole care team – pharmacists, clinicians, and pharmacogenomics experts – patients are better able to lead healthier, happier lives.”
Mental health represents one of the largest burdens on the U.S. healthcare system as one in five Americans struggle with a mental health condition.[i] Genomind Professional PGx Express is designed to reduce the painful process of treatment by trial and error and to reduce mental health-related healthcare costs. A study published in the Journal of Depression and Anxiety found that patients using Genomind’s test, as compared to similar patients who did not use PGx-guided treatment, demonstrated an estimated $1,948 cost reduction in the first six months, 40% fewer emergency room visits for any reason, and 58% fewer hospitalizations for any cause.[ii] Additional studies have shown that Genomind-guided treatment resulted in measurable mental health improvements in 87% of patients.[iii] In addition, Genomind PGx results can provide a lifetime of mental health prescribing guidance. While a patient’s circumstances may change, their genetic results are valid over the course of their life.
“We embrace the expansion of our pharmacists’ role in mental health treatment,” said Ryan McCann, Director of Pharmacy Operations at Jewel-Osco. “Our pharmacists want to decrease the time, money, and frustration involved with the trial-and-error process of identifying the most effective medication for a patient’s condition. They also want to help lower their patients’ risk of side effects from medication through personalized medicine.”
With Genomind Professional PGx Express now available, pharmacists who have observed a pattern of unsuccessful experiences with prescribed mental health medications can provide the patient with free educational materials on integrating Genomind’s test services into their treatment plans. After obtaining the patient’s permission, the pharmacist can coordinate with the patient’s healthcare provider to order the test and help administer the non-invasive cheek swab in a specially designated area of the Jewel-Osco pharmacy.
The pharmacist will then send the sample to Genomind’s lab. Within three days of receiving it, the fastest turnaround time in the industry, Genomind will provide the pharmacist and ordering clinician with results on genetic variants that can impact mental health treatment.
The personalized PGx test results are bundled with a suite of services that enable access to care, improve patient outcomes, and reduce healthcare costs, including:
- Complementary consultations from our on-staff PhD and PharmD pharmacogenetic experts are offered with every test;
- An Rx MetaType Card™, which is compatible with electronic medical records (EMRs), that provides the individual patient’s genotype and the expected impact (phenotype) for certain genetic variants related to drug metabolism. A patient’s ‘metatype’ can have a critical impact on the effects of drugs (including beyond those used in mental health treatment) on that individual; and
- Access for patients and providers to NeuroFlow, a collaborative behavioral healthcare digital platform to help the care team and patients better track compliance with treatment plans and enable remote monitoring and measurement-based care.
Under the agreement, pharmacists will also have access to G-DIG®, the Genomind Drug Interaction Guide. G-DIG is a proprietary, patient-specific software tool designed to assist clinicians and pharmacists in checking gene-drug and drug-drug interactions when prescribing medications. The system enables providers to see how more than 1,300 over-the-counter and prescription drugs might interact with the patient’s individual pharmacokinetic profile (gene-drug interactions), as well as to evaluate how medications that the patient is already taking or that are being considered may interact with each other (drug-drug interactions). Additionally, G-DIG provides genetic interaction information for lifestyle choices, including how smoking or drinking caffeine can affect the patient’s specific drug metabolism.
About Genomind® Professional PGx Express™ (PGx Express)
Genomind Professional PGx Express is the most advanced and comprehensive mental health pharmacogenomic service available, bundling the results of a patient’s individual genetic profile with a set of services to support the patient and clinician in improving treatment outcomes. With a genetic profile obtained via a safe and painless cheek swab, Genomind offers two versions of its report. The full mental health report analyzes potential variants on 24 pharmacokinetic or pharmacodynamic genes selected for inclusion based on guidelines from expert consortia and review of hundreds of peer-reviewed studies. Results include genetic information relevant for the treatment of conditions including depression, anxiety, autism, schizophrenia, chronic pain, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and substance abuse. In addition, Genomind offers a CORE Anxiety and Depression Report focused on a subset panel of the 15 genes most relevant to anxiety and depression.
PGx testing is gaining acceptance by a growing number of health insurers. Recently, a major health insurance plan began coverage of genetic tests, including Genomind Professional PGx Express, that help physicians identify the antidepressant and antipsychotic drugs most likely to benefit certain patients. The health plan’s policy specifies that the use of PGx multi-gene panels to guide therapy decisions is proven and medically necessary for antidepressants and antipsychotics medication for certain patients.
Genomind is the leading mental health care company delivering the genetic testing tools that empower clinicians to make more informed treatment decisions and create better outcomes for patients with mental illnesses. As the scientific leader in genetic testing, Genomind’s flagship offering is Genomind Professional PGx Express – the most advanced and comprehensive mental health genetic service available. Supported by a world-class genetics lab and unique consultative approach, Genomind is advancing a new paradigm of personalized medicine in mental health care. Learn more at www.genomind.com.
[ii] Perlis R et al. Pharmacogenetic testing among patients with mood and anxiety disorders is associated with decreased utilization and cost: A propensity‐score matched study. Depression and Anxiety, 2018. https://doi.org/10.1002/da.22742
Originally published to Business Wire.