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Dr Chelsee Jensen Discusses Pricing Strategies for Adalimumab Biosimilars


Chelsee Jensen, PharmD, BCPS, senior pharmacy specialist and pharmaceutical formulary manager at Mayo Clinic, explains the purpose of dual-pricing strategies for adalimumab biosimilars and predicts whether these strategies will occur in other treatment spaces.

Chelsee Jensen, PharmD, BCPS, senior pharmacy specialist and pharmaceutical formulary manager at Mayo Clinic, reacts to the interchangeability approval for Abrilada and attempts to explain the purpose of dual-pricing strategies for adalimumab biosimilars.


Several adalimumab products that entered the US market this year launched with 2 list prices. Can you explain why a company would use this pricing strategy and do you think this trend will continue in other markets?

I do think with the pharmacy benefit drugs, we might continue to see this trend. And this is happening because, again, from a manufacturer standpoint, in order to get on to some of these insurance formularies, we realize that some insurance companies have a historical precedence of being used to these large back end rebates. So that's, we'll see manufacturers potentially come into the market with 2 list prices to be more appealing to those insurer markets, whether they want the lower discount or the more deeper discount.

But one thing that we'll have to kind of keep trending and watching out for in this space, especially with adalimumab, is what's happening to the patient. I know a lot of talk or assumption is that the patient will utilize manufacturer co-pay assistance. However, we have to recognize that not every single patient on an insurance plan is going to qualify for that. So are we truly opening up access? And I think that'll just be something to continue to watch as adalimumab biosimilars rollout.

Recently, Abrilada was approved as the second interchangeable adalimumab biosimilar. How do you think the interchangeability label will influence payer preferences and prescription habits in the adalimumab space?

I do think that interchangeable ability makes it much easier. Obviously, you do not need to intervene and contact the provider to change the prescription over. However, I think that smaller community sites could come up with alternative mechanisms such as potentially collaborative practice agreements if their state state laws allow that and that would still kind of get over that operational hurdle of that interchangeability.

But again, I don't know that they don't necessarily have a huge impact on insurers uptaking biosimilars. I think they're probably going to be focused more on does the delivery of device match what that reference product is and what are those price points.

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