Despite having 8 adalimumab biosimilars on the market now, patients may only see 1 or 2 available through their insurance, explained Laura Wingate, executive vice president, Education, Support, & Advocacy, Crohn's & Colitis Foundation.
Having 7 adalimumab biosimilars come to the market at the same time, and a total of 8 launch over the first half of 2023, is a unique experience for biosimilars in the United States. This can be confusing for patients, especially if they only see 1 or 2 available through their insurance, explained Laura Wingate, executive vice president, Education, Support, & Advocacy, Crohn's & Colitis Foundation.
What are the challenges of having so many biosimilars available for the same originator product in such a short amount of time?
For the Foundation, we've been making patients aware of the approvals—once they got approved, we've been educating on them. But we've been doing consistent education since and reminding people that all of these launches have taken place, and they are all biosimilars to Humira. It is a little confusing that all of these biosimilars are coming out at once. But again, I lean into the importance of patient education, awareness building, helping patients understand that all of these products are available, but they may be only seeing 1 or 2 that's available from their insurance companies.
The insurers have a role to play here in helping patients understand what's available in terms of the biosimilars to Humira, and Remicade [infliximab] for that matter, but also giving them the resources to understand the terminology, the effectiveness, and all the information that they need to engage in an appropriate decision on what treatment's right for them.
There have been infliximab biosimilars on the market for a few years. Do you think that experience will help smooth the way for adoption of adalimumab biosimilars?
We're optimistic that it will. With experience, with knowledge that there haven't been patients who experienced immunogenicity and didn't do well on these drugs, that's going to help our health care professionals be more comfortable in prescribing the adalimumab biosimilars. But we also are going to leverage the patients who've been on Remicade biosimilars for the last few years to tell their stories and help other patients and caregivers understand that biosimilars are good. They're safe, they're effective, and should be part of every patient's consideration when they're talking to their doctor about a biologic or biosimilar.