With the focus of the pharmaceutical industry shifting towards rare diseases, oncology and gene therapies, there have been rising concerns regarding the funding of such treatments due to limited health budgets. Securing access to new and innovative medicines, in an affordable and sustainable way is one the key objectives for regulators and providers.
The general director of Pharmacy, Encarnación Cruz, has announced the initiation of a new financing model for high-cost medicines, primarily for treatments which:
- meet an unmet need
- are targeted for a small subset of patients
- have a high economic impact on the healthcare system
The new initiative is likely going to benefit rare disease and cancer treatments.
The new scheme will start with the reimbursement of Spinraza (nusinersen), a treatment for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). The treatment will cost about €400,000 per patient per year. Incorporating a sort of managed entry agreement, in which half of the treatment costs will be paid over the first year, while the company completes ongoing studies on the long-term safety and efficacy of the treatment. “If the medication is effective, it will be maintained; if not, it will be withdrawn”, Encarnación Cruz said, ruling out the possibility of not paying for the medication administered that have not been effective.
The new model aims to replicate the scheme across the Autonomous Communities in Spain, setting a precedent for funding for future high-cost treatments.