Gary Lyman, MD, MPH: Ongoing Biosimilar Education for Providers

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.