Here are seven trends most likely to be hitting the news cycle in 2019 according to BioSpace.
Biogen Inc.’s Spinraza treatment for spinal muscular atrophy and Swiss drugmaker Novartis AG’s experimental gene therapy are both expensive, but the gene therapy could be more cost effective once more is known about its U.S. price and long-term success rates, a preliminary report from an independent U.S. nonprofit organization said.
A unit of Johnson & Johnson will pay $360 million to resolve an investigation into the company’s financial support of a charity that helped Medicare patients cover out-of-pocket drug costs.
Merck & Co. Inc. raised U.S. prices on five of the company’s drugs in November 2018 by between 1.5 percent and 6 percent, including its top-selling cancer treatment Keytruda.
The U.S. government, in an effort to increase pressure on drugmakers to lower costs for U.S. consumers, will propose requiring companies to include the price of Rx medicines in TV ads.
Health authorities in England agreed with Novartis to fast-track access to the Swiss drugmaker’s expensive CAR-T cell therapy Kymriah and make it available to children and young people with aggressive leukemia when other drugs have failed.
Anthem Inc. partnered with Walmart Inc. to launch a program in January 2019 that will allow the health benefit company’s Medicare Advantage plan customers to purchase over-the-counter medications from the retailer’s stores and website.
Japan’s Eisai Co. Ltd. will price the company’s cancer drug Lenvima at about $16,000 for a month’s supply before discounts, after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the product’s use in patients with a common form of liver cancer.
GW Pharmaceuticals revealed a $32,500 price for the company’s cannabis-based epilepsy drug Epidiolex.
As drug prices fall under increased scrutiny, payers and regulators are targeting some key initiatives that could change the dynamic of pharmacy benefit management over the next 12 months. These emerging trends point to potentially rougher terrain for drugmakers looking to increase market share as payers take a more active role in enforcing formularies.