Member Spotlight: Kenzie Hohman is Senior Director, Ambulatory Care Pharmacy at Essentia Health. A graduate of University of Minnesota Duluth (PharmD) and The College of St. Scholastica (MBA, Health/Health Care Administration/Management)

Q: Tell us a little about yourself. How did you end up in the health system-owned specialty pharmacy industry? 

A: At Essentia Health, I oversee ambulatory care pharmacy services across our health-system.  This includes our 20+ retail pharmacies, central service pharmacy, specialty pharmacy, and medication access services.  I thrive in cutting through problems, finding solutions, and empowering others to improve healthcare delivery.  I started my journey in health-system practice during pharmacy school and have always appreciated the value integrated services provides to patient care.

Q: Tell us about your system’s specialty pharmacy. For example, how long have you have been operating, the size/number of patients you serve, etc?

A: Our Specialty Pharmacy was established in 2016 and focuses on enhancing the holistic health of our patients that requires specialty pharmacy services.  We are accredited through URAC, ACHC and The Joint Commission, and serve almost 2000 patients per year.  Our commitment to all Essentia Health patients means we provide support and services to all our patients prescribed specialty medications, regardless of the pharmacy dispensing the medication.

Q: Why did you join HOSP and how long have you been a member?

A: We joined HOSP in late 2021.  We joined HOSP because of our shared interests and advocacy for integrated care models and best practices, and the belief that together we can make a difference.

Q: What are some of the biggest challenges for this industry?

A: The greatest challenge for the specialty pharmacy industry is managing access to provide care.  While gaining accreditations and demonstrating value has opened channels, there remains significant barriers to drug and plan access that limit patients from choosing to use a health-system pharmacy.

Q: What does the future look like for the integrated specialty pharmacy industry? 

A: We will continue to face external pressure from payors and manufacturers on access to health-system specialty pharmacy services, but we can shape the narrative.  Integrated specialty pharmacies represent the ideal marriage of access, value, and outcomes for our patients.  The future is bright as more entities recognize the value of integrated care delivery.