The Future of Biosimilars
TOM DOUGLAS | Executive Director, Digital Patient Support Solutions]
After attending the 2023 Asembia Specialty Pharmacy Summit, it is clear that biosimilars are a solid proposition and an important trend today and in the future for the pharmaceutical industry for several reasons.
First and most important, the patent exclusivity for many biologics has expired or will expire in the coming years, which will allow for more biosimilar products to enter the market. This increased competition is expected to drive down the costs of biologic therapies further.
As a case in point, Humira (adalimumab) has been the #1 drug in worldwide sales for nearly a decade as one of the most successful and widely used biologic drugs for the treatment of a range of autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and Crohn’s disease. However, its patent expired in 2018 in Europe, and in July 2023 it will expire in the United States, which means that numerous biosimilar versions of the drug will soon be available and marketed.
This is a significant development in the pharmaceutical industry, as Humira has been a commercial monopoly as one of the top-selling drugs worldwide, generating billions of dollars in revenue each year. With the entry of at least 8 biosimilars into the market, there will be competition for the first time, and this is expected to drive down the cost of treatment and increase patient access to these life-saving drugs.
Second, biosimilars are designed to be highly similar to already-approved biologic drugs, which are complex and expensive to produce. However, biosimilars can provide a more affordable alternative for patients who require biologic therapies, increasing access to treatment options for many people around the world.
Third, as the global population continues to age and the burden of chronic diseases grows, healthcare systems around the world are looking for ways to reduce healthcare costs while maintaining an uncompromising quality of care. Biosimilars offer a potential solution to this problem by providing high-quality, cost-effective treatment options.
Lastly, given biosimilars can drive a more competitive marketplace, this opens the door for improved innovation on both the product and access fronts. Enhancing the biosimilar patient experience with real-time digital support could further expand their adoption and popularity. Medocity’s digital patient support platform provides an optimal out-of-the box solution to delivery any or all of the capabilities:
- Patient Education: Digital platforms can be utilized to provide educational resources to patients prescribed biosimilars. These solutions offer information on what biosimilars are, their safety and efficacy, and how they compare to reference biologics. In addition, they may include interactive tools, videos, and FAQs to help patients understand biosimilars better.
- Mobile Applications: Mobile apps are being developed to enhance the patient experience with biosimilars. These apps can provide features such as medication reminders, injection tracking, symptom monitoring, and side effect reporting.
- Remote Monitoring: Digital technologies can enable remote monitoring of patients using biosimilars. Connected devices and wearables can collect data in real-time on vital signs, disease symptoms, and treatment adherence. This data can be shared securely with healthcare providers, facilitating personalized care and timely interventions.
- Virtual Consultations: Telemedicine and virtual consultations have become more prevalent, allowing patients to remotely connect with healthcare professionals for consultations, follow-ups, and medication management. This approach reduces the need for in-person visits, improving convenience and accessibility for patients using biosimilars.
- Online Support Communities: Online communities and forums provide a platform for patients using biosimilars to connect, share experiences, and seek support. These platforms may be facilitated by patient advocacy groups and/or HCPs to foster a sense of community and address patient concerns.
- EHR Integration: Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems can be integrated with digital platforms to streamline the sharing of biosimilar-related information between HCPs, pharmacies, access & affordability hubs, and patients and caregivers. This integration enhances communication, facilitates prescription management, and enables better tracking of patient outcomes.
Overall, the increased availability of biosimilars is expected to provide more options for patients and providers, increase competition in the market, and potentially reduce healthcare costs. In addition, the utilization of biosimilars can increase patient access to affordable treatment and drive innovation in the healthcare industry, ultimately leading to improved patient experiences and outcomes, all of which can be successfully supported within the Medocity platform.
To learn more about how Medocity’s digital patient support solutions can support your biosimilar product, contact at Tom Douglas at email@example.com.