While biosimilar adoption remains at an early stage in the U.S., biosimilar adoption is ticking up. Biosimilar penetration for Roche’s Avastin (bevacizumab) is especially high at 69%. In addition, biosimilars for Genentech’s Herceptin and Amgen’s Neupogen have also achieved a market penetration of 57% and 62%, respectively, according to IQVIA data based on late June sales data.
One of the chief factors limiting the size of the biosimilars market, however, is the limited number of biosimilars on the market. While the Affordable Care Act included biosimilar provisions, only 33 biosimilars have won FDA approval since 2015. The agency approved ten of those in 2019.
The Biosimilars Council estimates that biosimilars could save the U.S. as much as $130 billion by 2025.
For now, however, overall adoption remains at a nascent stage. “Various factors have likely influenced biosimilar adoption, including physician and/or patient wariness about ‘sameness,’ aggressive contracting by innovators, unclear savings to providers/insurers, and lack of interchangeability, to name a few,” explained Truist analyst Gregg Gilbert in a recent briefing note.
U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) are vying to drive biosimilar adoption with a proposal known as the Increasing Access to Biosimilars Act. The plan would direct HHS to create a shared savings demonstration program for biosimilars within Medicare. The intended result would be expanded patient access to biosimilars and incentives for physicians to prescribe them to seniors.
The generic drug and specialty pharmaceuticals company Mylan (now Viatris) was a supporter of the proposal.
Filed Under: Drug Discovery