Biosimilar Firms Say Irish Price Deal Hinders Uptake, As Govt Plans New Policy Measures
The Irish health ministry is planning measures to boost the prescribing of biosimilar medicines, but companies marketing biosimilars say that the pricing agreement signed last year by the originator industry and the government has served to hinder uptake of their products.
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With three new approvals in January, the first anticancer about to be authorized, and a vote of confidence from the oncology physicians’ body ESMO, the European biosimilar medicines sector already seems to be picking up momentum in 2017.
Ireland is developing a new policy intended to increase the use of biosimilars, taking account of initiatives in other countries. The government says the aim is to help boost competition and access to cheaper biologicals.
The new Irish drug pricing deal, aimed at achieving savings of €785m over four years, provides for regular price cuts and rebates, price reductions for biologicals when biosimilar versions are marketed, and a new mechanism for dealing with high-cost medicines.