Gary Lyman, MD, MPH, of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, discusses the need for ongoing provider education about biosimilars.
There is absolutely a need for more educational activities, and we’ll continue to pursue that, both in the medical literature, in reviews, at the major medical meetings, including here at [National Comprehensive Cancer Network, NCCN]. It’s imperative.
However, I've been doing these educational programs probably for the last 3, 3-and-a-half years, and at each one, I do see a more educated audience. When I get the questions about the use of biosimilars that are being asked, they’re clearly more familiar with the concepts, and they're asking more subtle and deeper questions. So I think we are seeing an impact.
Again, we've got NCCN, [the American Society of Clinical Oncology, ASCO], the American Society of Hematology, all doing large educational programs on these, and it's like anything that's new: It takes time. As I said at the beginning, oncologists and hematologists tend to be skeptical of new things. They need to be shown. They need to get some personal experience with it. But I think that's coming, and I think over the next 3 to 5 years, I'm anticipating there will be a large-scale impact of biosimilars.