The Faces of Luminex: Stephanie Ibbotson, Reimbursement
Most people think of Luminex as a tech and assay company, but there’s an essential component that often goes unnoticed: reimbursement. Without having favorable coverage decisions from key payers, clinical labs have a hard time adopting molecular diagnostic products. We rely on Stephanie Ibbotson, Director of Market Access and Reimbursement Affairs, to navigate these challenging areas and ensure that our customers have the best experience with our products. She joined Luminex in 2015 and holds a bachelor’s degree in genetics from the University of Western Ontario, an MBA from Wilfrid Laurier University, a master’s in public health from the University of Liverpool, and is a chartered management accountant.
Q: What are your responsibilities at Luminex?
A: My overarching goal is to make sure that we have reimbursement for our products so our customers can buy and run them. On a day-to-day basis, I help customers with any reimbursement or billing issues that they have, prepare financial documents to show why it’s advantageous to use our products instead of others and work with payers to get them to cover our products by showing them value through clinical utility studies. I also help identify new products to develop and provide potential reimbursement information to help build the business case for them, as well as managing our clinical consulting program and working on external funding.
Q: How did you get on this career track?
A: In a previous life I worked in sales in Canada with a company that offered an HPV test. I started working with the government to change policies so that HPV testing could be the first screening test for the cause of disease, rather than doing a Pap test to look for existing symptoms. The government was very interested in ways to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with cervical cancer. That’s when I realized that policy could be used to save lives and went back to school for my public health degree.
Q: What did you do before this job?
A: I started the strategic marketing department here at Luminex.
Q: What drew you to Luminex?
A: I knew quite a few people who had worked at Luminex and I really liked the way they talked about the company. It was about the time of the ARIES® System launch and that was very interesting to me.
Q: Was it tough to make such a big move for this job, from Canada to Austin?
A: I was actually really excited about it, especially because it happened in the winter. I had been in Toronto and it was an easy move to make.
Q: If you weren’t working in reimbursement affairs at Luminex, where would you be?
A: I always thought I’d be a doctor.
Q: If you could solve any clinical or genetic challenge, what would it be?
A: I would wave a magic wand to find a cure for chronic illnesses like autoimmune disease. People with lifelong illnesses don’t always get the support and acknowledgment that goes to patients with more obvious and short-term diseases, and they have to carry on as if they don’t have these terrible health problems.
Q: What is something about you that no one at Luminex knows?
A: I’ve lived in multiple countries and I speak two languages, French and English.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do in Austin on the weekend?
A: I like to hit a trail with my dog, a Labradoodle named Frank.