The GLP is committed to full transparency. Download and review our 2019 Annual Report

Exorbitant costs of gene therapy raise payment concerns for patients and government

| | December 7, 2017
healthcare costs x
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

[Editor’s note: Executives from several companies developing gene therapies gathered for a panel discussion at the recent Forbes Healthcare Summit, where they discussed pricing issues.]

Jeffrey Marrazzo, the co-founder and chief executive officer of Spark Therapeutics, has an approach to valuing his company’s gene therapy treatment for a rare form of blindness that even he realizes may be controversial.

Spark has undertaken extensive research and modeling to figure out how much it would be worth for one patient to be cured of blindness—a process that has included looking at the costs to both that patient and to society as a whole, said Marrazzo during a panel discussion at the Forbes Healthcare Summit on Thursday.  “When we modeled that, we thought we could easily value [the therapy] in excess of $1 million,” he said.

[Critic Steve] Miller proposed several alternative payment plans for pricey one-time treatments, including value-based pricing. Novartis has been an early adopter of value-based pricing. In fact, the company struck a deal on Kymriah with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which stipulates that the government-run insurance plan will only pay for the treatment when patients respond within the first month after receiving it.

Just how healthcare payers will react to a $1 million gene therapy—should Spark decide that’s the right price—remains to be seen.

Read full, original post: Gene Therapy Is Booming, But How Will We Manage The Costs?

Share via
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend