Kashyap Patel, MD, Medical Oncologist, Carolina Blood and Cancer Care, discusses the potential impact of biosimilar drugs on Medicare Part D drug pricing.
What would be the impact of biosimilars on Part D drug pricing?
So right now, our country is facing a drug price explosion. There’s been a couple of areas where it’s growing fastest—the hematological space, where we’re growing about 12.9% per year in terms of cost, and in the oncologic space, [which is] growing at 4.9%. So, we don’t have infinite resources, and at some stage, the system with either implode, or we have to look at drug pricing. Biosimilars do have a role. They can help in reducing some of the additional escalation of the expenses. When we go back and look at the European experience, in Europe, in 10 years’ time, drug prices have dropped by about 30% compared to the reference product. So clearly biosimilars do have a significant role that they can play in the Part D drug pricing space, and they also improve access as well, so biosimilars have a very valid and legitimate space in becoming part of the solution for Part D prices.