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ICER finds Roche’s Hemlibra cost-effective despite high price tag

Roche’s new haemophilia treatment, Hemlibra, is has a high estimated price tag of $482,000 for the first year of treatment and $448,000 for every subsequent year. Despite this, an analysis by the U.S. Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) has revealed that the treatment is still cost effective. The report stated that the Hemlibra would save the US healthcare system approximately $1.9 million each year at its whole sale price in patients who are 12 and older. (January 27, 2018)

P4A Thoughts

In its draft analysis, ICER concluded that Hemlibra was more effective and generates more QALYs (Quality Adjusted Life Years) at lower total cost, both from a health system and societal perspective.

The positive conclusion, that is now open for public comments, provides a boost for Roche which priced the drug at a premium. Further, it puts Hemlibra in pole position as a breakthrough product and a potential multi-billion dollar blockbuster drug in the hemophilia A market. Having achieved US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approval three months before its target action date of February 23, 2018, Hemlibra is already billed a major disrupter for current hemphilia A therapies such as Novo Nordisk’s Novo Seven (recombinant coagulation Factor VIIa).

The latest announcement also highlights ICER’s growing reputation as the `go-to’ organisation that underpins the value framework of U.S. drugs in a market that is increasingly moving towards some high-octane discussions about drug prices. 

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