Specialty Medicines

Five things for pharma marketers to know: Tuesday, August 4

Five things for pharma marketers to know: Tuesday, August 4

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Shire offers to buy Baxalta for $30 billion; CVS reports strong sales in specialty pharmacy; Reuters reports that new drug launches hit 17-year high in 2014

US drug spending shows reliance on specialty Rx

US drug spending shows reliance on specialty Rx

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Americans spent 13.1% more on prescription medications in 2014 than they did in 2013, but recent launches indicate competition in the specialty drug space is going to heat up.

Specialty medications have PBMs on edge

Specialty medications have PBMs on edge

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CVS health execs write that cost of long-term specialty medications, not short-timers like Sovaldi, are a major worry.

World projected to spend $1T on drugs in 2018

World projected to spend $1T on drugs in 2018

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The IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics notes that developed markets remain a key driver.

Specialty prescription costs hurt across the board

Specialty prescription costs hurt across the board

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Solutions for how to handle specialty medication costs are lacking, but the data around them shows a need for serious problem-solving.

Drug spend will continue to rise through 2023

Drug spend will continue to rise through 2023

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The numbers folks at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services anticipate sluggish growth in US healthcare spend, but prescriptions look ready to take off.

Lilly takes on Amgen's Enbrel

Lilly takes on Amgen's Enbrel

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Phase-III tests indicate Lilly's experimental treatment bests Amgen's for moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis.

 Five things for pharma marketers to know: Friday, August 15

Five things for pharma marketers to know: Friday, August 15

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UK drug-cost watchdog backs Sovaldi, Achillion touts HCV interim results, Avastin's latest cancer indication, Ebola outbreak worsens, COPD drug gets panel nod, and study links quick reviews and black-box warnings.

Researchers urge specialty Rx insurance plans

Researchers urge specialty Rx insurance plans

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Researchers argue it makes economic sense to employ Value-Based Insurance Design plans for costly specialty medications.

CVS specialty goes retail

CVS specialty goes retail

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Patients will now be able to submit specialty prescriptions at the national chain's retail stores.

2013 favored specialists, specialty Rx

2013 favored specialists, specialty Rx

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The latest IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics assessment of 2013's prescription drug use shows that 2.3% of prescriptions account for 30% of a patient's out-of-pocket prescription costs.

Diabetes costliest among non-specialty Rx

Diabetes costliest among non-specialty Rx

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Express Scripts said treatments for diabetes are the most expensive of the traditional medications, while specialty drugs are eating up a significant portion of total drug spend.

Actavis buys Forest, bolsters specialty biz

Actavis buys Forest, bolsters specialty biz

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The drugmaker, hitherto known for its generic expertise, says the purchase could mean that half its future revenue will come from branded, specialty drugs.

Few employers contain specialty Rx costs: study

Few employers contain specialty Rx costs: study

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The third Pharmacy Benefit Management Institute specialty medication survey expects specialty medications, which average around $3,000 per month per patient, will account for 50% of the drug spend within four or five years.

What payer concerns? Sovaldi ahead of curve

What payer concerns? Sovaldi ahead of curve

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If the HCV drug's trajectory continues, it could exceed Q1 and 2014 sales forecasts, despite payers' reported unease over price.

Osbourne joins Teva for "You Don't Know Jack About MS"

Osbourne joins Teva for "You Don't Know Jack About MS"

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Famous from his reality show, "The Osbournes," Jack narrates his life with MS in a web documentary series.

CVS says specialty drug spend to quadruple

CVS says specialty drug spend to quadruple

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The PBM encourages step-therapy to control costs.

FDA panel backs BioMarin rare-disease drug

FDA panel backs BioMarin rare-disease drug

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The patient population is small, at around 3,000, but the expected price tag is $330,000 a year.

IMS predicts $1T global drug market by 2017

IMS predicts $1T global drug market by 2017

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The catch is the difference between sales and revenues. Generics will continue to be a force, and small-audience drugs will become increasingly important.

Dudnyk buys device-marketing expert Stratagem

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Dudnyk bought San Francisco-based Stratagem, expanding its West Coast presence and adding medical-device marketing expertise, the agency said.

Specialty shop BioLumina promotes Jones to president

Specialty shop BioLumina promotes Jones to president

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The promotion of Ane Jones to president is the latest management change at the Omnicom specialty agency and its bigger sibling, Harrison & Star.

Specialty Pharma: Niches to Riches

Specialty Pharma: Niches to Riches

Specialty biopharma firms are using razor-sharp therapeutic focus to target "niche buster" categories.


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Specialty medicines continue to be a hot category, one in which spending has surged behind products that treat medicine's most complex diseases. This eBook lays out the needs and hurdles along the specialty drug pathway, explaining how stakeholders are working to get meds into patients' hands and ease their experience. Click here to download.