Patients & Quality
Our experience to date shows that biosimilar medicines significantly increase patient access to high quality treatments. Not only can more patients become eligible for treatment, they can also be used earlier in the treatment course, therefore enabling patients to live with better life quality standards. This is what happened in 2006 with the introduction of biosimilar filgrastim, which is used for neutropenia to support the immune system of patients under chemotherapy treatment. Between 2006 and 2013, biosimilar filgrastim ensured that 44% more patients obtained access to gold standard medicines in the EU-5 countries.4 Also for other therapeutic areas such as EPO or growth hormone, access increased considerably upon biosimilar competition and some countries were able to address unmet clinical needs.5 The same positive trend is expected with the recent entry of the first biosimilar monoclonal antibody infliximab in light of the high uptake levels in Europe. So what do biosimilar medicines deliver?
Biosimilar medicines improve access to indispensable pillars of modern therapies for millions of patients
With more than 10 years of positive patient and treatment experience and some 20 products successfully launched, biosimilar medicines provide a huge opportunity to deliver significantly improved access to modern therapies for millions of European patients in both chronic and acute care in areas such as cancer, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis or other immune-related diseases. We know that 70% to 80% of all healthcare costs in the EU – an estimated 700 billion EUR – are currently spent on chronic diseases. Biosimilar medicines answer one of Europe’s major healthcare challenges: how to ensure that all European patients get equitable access to treatment?
The European biosimilar medicines industry is the global pioneer of this sector and has over 15 years of experience in developing and manufacturing to the highest quality standards. All biosimilar medicines available in Europe are developed, manufactured and approved according to stringent EU laws designed to set the highest global standards of safety, efficacy and quality. Biosimilar medicines are subject to the same rigorous pharmacovigilance requirements as all other biologic medicines in the EU. The Biosimilar Medicines Group of Medicines for Europe also engages in multilateral dialogues to promote the same high standards for the global development of biosimilar medicines in venues such as the WHO, or the EU-US TTIP regulatory cooperation negotiations.
4 EU-5 countries: France, Germany, Italy, Spain and UK
5 IMS Health (2015). The impact of biosimilar competition