On Thursday, the Oncology Business Review (OBR) hosted a panel discussion, “The Advent of Biosimilars in Oncology: Planning Proactively for Change.”
On Thursday, the Oncology Business Review (OBR) hosted a panel discussion, “The Advent of Biosimilars in Oncology: Planning Proactively for Change.” The webinar featured biosimilars thought leaders, including Steven B. Miller, MD, senior vice president and chief medical officer of Express Scripts, and Christina Corridon, associate principal of ZS Associates, who gave their thoughts on the future of biosimilars.
“2017 is going to be a great year for approvals,” said Miller, noting that there are 12 originator products with biosimilars in development, representing a potential $38.5 in sales at stake. He identified the following products as having competition within the biosimilars space:
Miller projected that biosimilars could generate approximately $250 billion in savings through 2024, assuming that products are priced at a 30% discount to originator products, and that no patients currently receiving reference products would be switched to biosimilars (as interchangeable status has not yet been granted to any biosimilars).
In describing the awareness of, and attitudes toward, biosimilars in the oncology marketplace, Corridon discussed an as-yet unpublished survey conducted by ZS Associates, that assessed the education level and perceptions of biosimilars among 252 respondents (200 oncologists, 25 payers, and 27 pharmacy directors).
ZS derived 4 key conclusions from its survey:
In reflecting on the challenges that lie ahead for biosimilars, Miller cited the need to drive down costs, but said that, until there are multiple biosimilars for individual reference products available in the marketplace, discounts for biosimilars will remain shallow. He also suggested that reference product manufacturers will do everything in their power to prevent the loss of market share for their products.
Yet biosimilars, said Corridon, still have the power to enhance value-driven care and increase competition. “Financial toxicity is real,” she said, and biosimilars could help ease financial burdens on patients.