Cash-Pay Ketamine Treatment Programs Explode in Popularity and Access

In our first article, we look at how clinics and online pharmacies are focusing on the use of ketamine to address patient issues including PTSD and depression. Off-label use of ketamine is generally not covered by insurance and thus creates a lucrative opportunity when engaging cash-pay patients.

Background

As you might be aware, ketamine is an FDA-approved anesthetic with a good safety profile. Doctors often use it in emergency settings for agitated and suicidal patients. In fact, ER patients often feel less suicidal months after receiving a dose of ketamine. That said, research on new treatment options for ketamine has grown substantially over the years which has led to dozens of “ketamine clinics” popping up in cities like Los Angeles, Miami, New York City and many more. Ketamine typically induces a dissociative state, a.k.a “a trip.” And can bring about visual distortions, euphoria, and a buzzed-like feeling for users. These effects are doing wonders for patients suffering from all sorts of ailments like treatment-resistant depression, PTSD, migraines, chronic pain disorders and complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS).

Ketamine Clinics

Patients across the country are looking for clinics offering ketamine therapy because it delivers long-lasting results…and fast. As a provider, ketamine therapy is particularly attractive because it is an all-cash business with no insurance involved. Patients are routinely spending between $4,000 to $8,000 per round of treatment. For example, Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles is giving ketamine infusions to patients in the office using the same ketamine that is administered in an operating room but diluting it to make a solution to be infused over 45 minutes or so. The patient must have a buddy to accompany them since the patient is not allowed to drive for the remainder of the treatment day.

Direct to Consumer Pharmacies

Another example is mindbloom. Mindbloom is a telemedicine company that provides ketamine therapy in a virtual setting. Mindbloom has partnered with a mail order pharmacy in Utah to compound orange-flavored sublingual ketamine tablets from USP-grade ketamine powder that patients can use in the comfort of their own home under the guidance of a psychotherapist.

Leveraging Pharma Solutions

Ketamine is technically an FDA-approved drug but it does come with some compliance risks due to its DEA schedule. Prescribing a controlled substance for an off-label indication can be tricky but that’s where Pharma Solutions comes in. We are experienced in these specific areas of healthcare FDA and state compliance and can help your business maintain compliance in all aspects. Do you have questions about implementing ketamine in your clinic? Contact Lindsay Wall, PharmD today!
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