Over the last five years a fundamental shift in spending trends towards high-priced medicines, which treat substantially smaller patient populations, has been underway in the US market.
Based on an analysis of the Top 100 selling drugs in the USA we have found that:
- The median revenue per patient of the Top 100 drugs has increased from $1,260 in 2010 to $9,400 in 2014, representing an seven-fold increase (see page: 7)
- The median patient population size served by a Top 100 drug in 2014 is 146,000, down from 690,000 in 2010.
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Why the Shift?
The changes in spending are complex, but we have identified a number of factors that could have contributed to the increase in launch prices and drug price inflation, including:
- Successful R&D innovation
- Drug pricing models that impact launch price
- Advancing patient outcome
- Removing costs from healthcare
- Improving patient economic productivity
- Private and public ability to pay
The US system of free market pricing also allows a correlation between higher drug prices and new treatments which offer real innovation over current treatments. Thus, Sovaldi was able to charge more than Incivek (Vertex) and Victrelis (Merck), the first advancements in hepatitis C treatment, whose commercial edge lasted for only two and a half years.
Revlimid, Herceptin, Avastin & Rituxan at Price Premium
EvaluatePharma® finds that Revlimid (Celgene) and Roche's trio of leading cancer products (Herceptin, Avastin & Rituxan) are priced at a premium compared to other Top 20 biggest selling cancer products in 2014.
Average Retail Price of Top 20 Medicaid Generics Drop on Average 9% per Year
EvaluatePharma®, based on analysis of Medicaid data, finds the average retail prescription price paid for a Top 20 most prescribed USA generic fell on average 9% per year between 2008 and 2014, from $22.47 to $12.50.
Acetaminophen; hydrocodone bitartrate was the most prescribed generic in 2013. It was also one of only two generics to register a retail price increase per prescription over 2008 and 2014, up 2.3% per year to $15.03.