Specialty drugs continue to dominate the pharma pipeline, which has literally hundreds of these high-cost therapies poised to hit the market. Some will add to therapeutic classes that already have several options, including multiple sclerosis and hepatitis C, while others are expected to fill gaps in care where no treatments exist, such as certain cancers and orphan conditions.
But that innovation doesn’t come cheap, as demonstrated by the hepatitis C drug Sovaldi. By some estimates, specialty medications in the pipeline — including biosimilars — could contribute to a quadrupling of specialty drug spend by the end of the decade from the 2012 total.
What impact are these new specialty therapies likely to have on health plans and employers? What steps can your organization take to attain an optimal balance between improved outcomes and soaring costs?