Biosimilars are an exciting advancement in pharmacologic oncology because they offer equivalent treatment at a lower cost to patients and practices. With the high cost of biologic drugs, biosimilars can be a safe, effective, and less expensive alternative. The RAND Corporation estimates that cost savings using biosimilars will be more than $54 billion over the next 10 years and GoodRx found that they are 10-37% cheaper than the original drug, which FDA calls the reference product.
It can be difficult to keep up with the pace of expansion of these medications, for example, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved 42 biosimilars since 2015. To help oncologists and care teams track and support oncology biosimilar adoption, CancerLinQ’s newest dashboard allows you to compare your oncology biosimilar usage side-by-side within your practice.
Even though they are manufactured by different companies, biosimilars are not considered generic because they are not bioequivalent. Biosimilars are biologics that are highly similar to the reference product; there are no clinically meaningful differences. There are also several biosimilars for each reference drug. For example, there are six FDA- approved biosimilars for pegfilgrastim and five for trastuzumab.
This can be challenging for cancer care teams because unlike some other biosimilars, none of biosimilars used in oncology are currently approved to be interchangeable. The prescriber must directly indicate the biosimilar they would like the patient to receive, and a pharmacist does not have the authority to switch to a biosimilar if the reference product is prescribed. As a clinician considers a patient’s physical and financial needs, having accessible data on biosimilars and how they are used within their practice would be extremely helpful.
CancerLinQ’s newest report in its suite of dashboards shows oncology biosimilar adoption in your practice to support any goals your care team may have related to biosimilar utilization and overall cost savings. The dashboard shows bevacizumab, rituximab, and trastuzumab reference products and biosimilars as well as colony-stimulating growth factor reference products and biosimilars.
The dashboard also illustrates the usage of reference products and biosimilars compared side-by-side over time. You can filter by cancer type, cancer stage, practice location, and provider, as well as drill down to a specific patient to identify opportunities to switch patients to biosimilars where appropriate
The CancerLinQ team is very excited about this new dashboard, and I encourage you to schedule a live CancerLinQ demonstration to see it and the other tools that will help you improve quality of care, reduce costs, improve productivity, and optimize clinical workflows.