Evidence on the cost of breast cancer drugs is required for rational decision making

Anne Margreet Sofie Berghuis, Hendrik Koffijberg, Leonardus Wendelinus Mathias Marie Terstappen, Stefan Sleijfer, Maarten Joost IJzerman (Corresponding Author)

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Abstract

Background: For rational decision making, assessing the cost-effectiveness and budget impact of new drugs and comparing the costs of drugs already on the market is required. In addition to value frameworks, such as the American Society of Clinical Oncology Value Framework and the European Society of Medical Oncology–Magnitude of Clinical benefit Scale, this also requires a transparent overview of actual drug prices. While list prices are available, evidence on treatment cost is not. This paper aims to synthesise evidence on the reimbursement and costs of high-cost breast cancer drugs in The Netherlands (NL). Methods: A literature review was performed to identify currently reimbursed breast cancer drugs in the NL. Treatment costs were determined by multiplying list prices with the average length of treatment and dosing schedule. Results: Comparing list prices to the estimated treatment cost resulted in substantial differences in the ranking of costliness of the drugs. The average mean treatment length was unknown for 11/31 breast cancer drugs (26.2%). The differences in the 15 highest-cost drugs were largest for Bevacizumab, Lapatinib and everolimus, with list prices of €541, €158, €1,168 and estimated treatment cost of €174,400, €18,682 and €31,207, respectively. The lowest-cost (patented) targeted drug is €1,818 more expensive than the highest-cost (off-patent) generic drug according to the estimated drug treatment cost. Conclusions: A lack of evidence on the reimbursement and cost of high-cost breast cancer drugs complicates rapid and transparent evidence synthesis, necessary to focus strategies aiming to limit the increasing healthcare costs. Interestingly, the findings show that off-patent generics (such as paclitaxel or doxorubicin), although substantially cheaper than patented drugs, are still relatively costly. Extending standardisation and increasing European and national regulations on presenting information on costs per cancer drug is highly recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Article number825
JournalEcancermedicalscience
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Apr 2018

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Decision Making
Breast Neoplasms
Costs and Cost Analysis
Health Care Costs
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Drug Costs
Netherlands
Generic Drugs
Medical Societies
Budgets
Paclitaxel
Doxorubicin
Cost-Benefit Analysis
Appointments and Schedules
Neoplasms

Keywords

  • Breast cancer
  • Cost
  • Drug
  • Health economics
  • Medication
  • Treatment

Cite this

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title = "Evidence on the cost of breast cancer drugs is required for rational decision making",
abstract = "Background: For rational decision making, assessing the cost-effectiveness and budget impact of new drugs and comparing the costs of drugs already on the market is required. In addition to value frameworks, such as the American Society of Clinical Oncology Value Framework and the European Society of Medical Oncology–Magnitude of Clinical benefit Scale, this also requires a transparent overview of actual drug prices. While list prices are available, evidence on treatment cost is not. This paper aims to synthesise evidence on the reimbursement and costs of high-cost breast cancer drugs in The Netherlands (NL). Methods: A literature review was performed to identify currently reimbursed breast cancer drugs in the NL. Treatment costs were determined by multiplying list prices with the average length of treatment and dosing schedule. Results: Comparing list prices to the estimated treatment cost resulted in substantial differences in the ranking of costliness of the drugs. The average mean treatment length was unknown for 11/31 breast cancer drugs (26.2{\%}). The differences in the 15 highest-cost drugs were largest for Bevacizumab, Lapatinib and everolimus, with list prices of €541, €158, €1,168 and estimated treatment cost of €174,400, €18,682 and €31,207, respectively. The lowest-cost (patented) targeted drug is €1,818 more expensive than the highest-cost (off-patent) generic drug according to the estimated drug treatment cost. Conclusions: A lack of evidence on the reimbursement and cost of high-cost breast cancer drugs complicates rapid and transparent evidence synthesis, necessary to focus strategies aiming to limit the increasing healthcare costs. Interestingly, the findings show that off-patent generics (such as paclitaxel or doxorubicin), although substantially cheaper than patented drugs, are still relatively costly. Extending standardisation and increasing European and national regulations on presenting information on costs per cancer drug is highly recommended.",
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Evidence on the cost of breast cancer drugs is required for rational decision making. / Berghuis, Anne Margreet Sofie; Koffijberg, Hendrik; Terstappen, Leonardus Wendelinus Mathias Marie; Sleijfer, Stefan; IJzerman, Maarten Joost (Corresponding Author).

In: Ecancermedicalscience, Vol. 12, 825, 16.04.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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T1 - Evidence on the cost of breast cancer drugs is required for rational decision making

AU - Berghuis, Anne Margreet Sofie

AU - Koffijberg, Hendrik

AU - Terstappen, Leonardus Wendelinus Mathias Marie

AU - Sleijfer, Stefan

AU - IJzerman, Maarten Joost

PY - 2018/4/16

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N2 - Background: For rational decision making, assessing the cost-effectiveness and budget impact of new drugs and comparing the costs of drugs already on the market is required. In addition to value frameworks, such as the American Society of Clinical Oncology Value Framework and the European Society of Medical Oncology–Magnitude of Clinical benefit Scale, this also requires a transparent overview of actual drug prices. While list prices are available, evidence on treatment cost is not. This paper aims to synthesise evidence on the reimbursement and costs of high-cost breast cancer drugs in The Netherlands (NL). Methods: A literature review was performed to identify currently reimbursed breast cancer drugs in the NL. Treatment costs were determined by multiplying list prices with the average length of treatment and dosing schedule. Results: Comparing list prices to the estimated treatment cost resulted in substantial differences in the ranking of costliness of the drugs. The average mean treatment length was unknown for 11/31 breast cancer drugs (26.2%). The differences in the 15 highest-cost drugs were largest for Bevacizumab, Lapatinib and everolimus, with list prices of €541, €158, €1,168 and estimated treatment cost of €174,400, €18,682 and €31,207, respectively. The lowest-cost (patented) targeted drug is €1,818 more expensive than the highest-cost (off-patent) generic drug according to the estimated drug treatment cost. Conclusions: A lack of evidence on the reimbursement and cost of high-cost breast cancer drugs complicates rapid and transparent evidence synthesis, necessary to focus strategies aiming to limit the increasing healthcare costs. Interestingly, the findings show that off-patent generics (such as paclitaxel or doxorubicin), although substantially cheaper than patented drugs, are still relatively costly. Extending standardisation and increasing European and national regulations on presenting information on costs per cancer drug is highly recommended.

AB - Background: For rational decision making, assessing the cost-effectiveness and budget impact of new drugs and comparing the costs of drugs already on the market is required. In addition to value frameworks, such as the American Society of Clinical Oncology Value Framework and the European Society of Medical Oncology–Magnitude of Clinical benefit Scale, this also requires a transparent overview of actual drug prices. While list prices are available, evidence on treatment cost is not. This paper aims to synthesise evidence on the reimbursement and costs of high-cost breast cancer drugs in The Netherlands (NL). Methods: A literature review was performed to identify currently reimbursed breast cancer drugs in the NL. Treatment costs were determined by multiplying list prices with the average length of treatment and dosing schedule. Results: Comparing list prices to the estimated treatment cost resulted in substantial differences in the ranking of costliness of the drugs. The average mean treatment length was unknown for 11/31 breast cancer drugs (26.2%). The differences in the 15 highest-cost drugs were largest for Bevacizumab, Lapatinib and everolimus, with list prices of €541, €158, €1,168 and estimated treatment cost of €174,400, €18,682 and €31,207, respectively. The lowest-cost (patented) targeted drug is €1,818 more expensive than the highest-cost (off-patent) generic drug according to the estimated drug treatment cost. Conclusions: A lack of evidence on the reimbursement and cost of high-cost breast cancer drugs complicates rapid and transparent evidence synthesis, necessary to focus strategies aiming to limit the increasing healthcare costs. Interestingly, the findings show that off-patent generics (such as paclitaxel or doxorubicin), although substantially cheaper than patented drugs, are still relatively costly. Extending standardisation and increasing European and national regulations on presenting information on costs per cancer drug is highly recommended.

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