Thursday, January 10, 2013

Denmark - Drug Pricing pressures getting intense - Lantus scores over Levemir based on lower pricing

In Denmark, in a reassessment of reimbursement grant to diabetes drugs, the Reimbursement Committee have moved the analog insulins Lantus and Levemir from general to limited reimbursement. But in addition, the Board made a distinction between products, and has recommended that patients must first be treated with Sanofi's Lantus, and only if that does not work, they can be treated with Novo Nordisk's Levemir. Overall this does not bode well for the next generation insulin from Novo Nordisk , Lilly and Sanofi which are expected to reach the market over the next few years.
This new differentiation has been made solely on the basis of the price differential between the two products.  Both Lantus and Levemir are considered to  have the same efficacy and safety profile, but there is a significant price difference. 
It was only in the recent past that Sanofi dropped the prices of Lantus

Mogens Laue Friis.the president of Reimbursement committe said that if Novo (manufacturer of Levemir, ed.) Cuts the price close to the price of Lantus, only then they would consider the grant again and possibly change it.The Reimbursement Committee recommends that the average lowest price of treatment from 18.14 to 18.79 kroner for Levemir, while Sanofi put the price down 26th November 2012 as Lantus now costs £ 14.94Director of Novo Nordisk Christophe Duret. said that it is a serious weakness of the system that Lantus is preferred over Levemir, based on prices that are based on a specific time, but prices change every week. Whether Novo Nordisk will adjust the price down to get changed Reimbursement Committee decision, I can not say at this time

Sanofi, Novo Nordisk and others have until 8 February to submit their comments to the Reimbursement Committee's recommendation.

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