Sector News

Big new launches rocket cancer drug spending to $100B: IMS report

May 6, 2015
Life sciences
Cancer drug pricing is turning more and more heads, especially as critical payers threaten a crackdown in the oncology field. And there’s a reason for all the hullaballoo: Spending on oncology meds is increasing rapidly, new IMS numbers show.
 
According to the institute’s 2015 oncology trend report, global spending on cancer therapies shot up 10.3% in 2014 to reach $100 billion–up from $75 billion just 5 years earlier. In the U.S., per capita spending checked in at $99 last year, a big increase over the $71 it hit in 2010.
 
The reasons? In major developed markets, protected brands and big new launches have primarily driven the growth, the report says. Targeted therapies are doing their fair share to keep spending up, too, rising at a compound average growth rate of 14.6% over the past 5 years and now accounting for almost half the total worldwide tally.
 
And it doesn’t look like those spending numbers will be heading south anytime soon, either. IMS forecasts increased spending levels through 2018 that’ll expand at a compound average growth rate of 6% to 8%, bringing oncology spending to between $117 billion and $147 billion by that year. That’s even taking into account some market-share grab from cheaper biosimilars, IMS says, whose effects will be offset by climbing cancer diagnoses and treatment rates.
 
But payers, who have been making noise since pricey, next-gen Sovaldi from Gilead arrived to shake up the hep C scene, aren’t going to take the spending hikes lying down. Vocal critic and Express Scripts CMO Steve Miller has said he’s prepping an attack on cancer drug prices that’ll be a “much bigger effort” than the quick-hit tactics he used to ignite a price war and drive down hep C costs.
 
What does that mean for pharma? The changes won’t all come at once, and it’ll be a series of smaller moves instead of one leveling blow. They could include switching up the order in which costly drugs are used, or relying on a single expensive drug instead of a combo that offers marginal benefits.
 
Exactly what’s to come remains to be seen. But one thing’s for sure: It’s coming soon. “We want to be able to start influencing the market by 2016,” Miller told investors last week. “We are accumulating all the keys to the puzzle to be able to do this.”
 
By Carly Helfand 
 
 

Join the discussion!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related News

November 22, 2020

Belgium is ‘European biotech leader’ for 3rd year in a row

Life sciences

Belgian companies account for just under a quarter (24%) of the total stock market value of all public biotech companies in Europe.

November 22, 2020

J&J, following BMS, pledges $100M to address racism and health inequities

Life sciences

Johnson & Johnson is re-upping its commitment to addressing health inequities as the pandemic lays bare long-standing divisions.

November 22, 2020

Sanofi sponsors Parkinson’s Foundation’s genetic study with $1M for free testing

Life sciences

It’s estimated that 10% to 15% of people with Parkinson’s have a genetic form of the disease and Sanofi Genzyme is backing a new study to help find those people.

Send this to a friend