RxBenefits and PBM Partners’ Response to COVID-19
BREAKING NEWS: Commissioner says FDA is moving at “lightning speed” to approve Gilead drug remdesivir for COVID-19 treatment in some patients
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, shared early trial results Wednesday, April 29, 2020, that showed Gilead Sciences Inc.’s remdesivir had a significant effect in treating the COVID-19 virus in acutely ill patients. The study showed that patients treated with remdesivir recovered faster than those receiving placebo (11 days vs. 15 days), representing a 31% improvement.
In response to the encouraging results, the Food and Drug Administration is moving at “lightning speed” to review data from the promising study, per Commissioner Stephen Hahn. Hahn could not offer a timeline for allowing remdesivir to reach the market, instead stating that the agency has “several different pathways” through which it could allow access. In addition to emergency authorization, the FDA can speedily approve a medication and then ask for more study while it’s being used by patients.
At this time, PBMs have not issued any positioning statements regarding coverage management, but this is an intravenous medication that would likely be administered to only the sickest patients on an inpatient basis, allowing for coverage under the medical benefit.
Wednesday, March 18, 2020
The world is grappling with an issue of enormous scale and human impact, and our hearts go out to all who have been or will be affected by the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19).
As your partner in health, we believe our role and responsibility is to prioritize three things:
- The health and well-being of our associates, partners, and clients,
- The provision of essential pharmacy benefit services, and
- Finally, playing a constructive role in supporting government officials and local communities as they endeavor to contain the virus and minimize the impact to the healthcare system.
We are committed to keeping you, our consulting partners, clients, and members, aware of all news related to the coronavirus (COVID-19). This is a rapidly evolving situation which we continue to monitor closely. As new information unfolds, we will keep you informed on any new details that impact your pharmacy benefits plan.
We are actively engaged with all of our PBM partners, and will continue to update you as new information is made available. If we have any news that is deemed urgent, we will email all clients with the information specific to their PBM choice. We will be making real-time updates as they come in throughout the day.
Together, we can help flatten the curve and slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).