Regneron CEO counters criticism from ICER on pricing
- The Boston-based Institute of Clinical and Economic Research (ICER) has become a prominent value-based analysis think-tank --- but not everyone is buying it, according to Reuters. Leonard Schleifer, CEO of Regeneron, said that ICER's approach is non-scientific and lacks intellectual honesty.
- Last year, ICER conducted a value-based cost analysis of Regeneron's PSCK9 inhibitor, Praluent, which Regeneron co-markets with Sanofi, for treatment or refractory or familial hypercholesterolemia. According to their analysis, it should be priced 67% less than the current price tag, which is about $14,000 per year.
- Schleifer made his comments at the Financial Times U.S. Healthcare & Life Sciences Summit, and though he criticized ICER's approach to value-based pricing, he said that he is supportive of the concept in general.
According to the ICER's analysis, if only 25% of eligible patients used one of the PCSK9 inhibitors, it would cost an average of $20 billion per year at $14,000 per patient.
Schleifer's criticism of that approach is that the idea of basing cost on the perception of what society can afford is arbitrary and wrong. To counter his comments, Sarah Emond, CEO of ICER, who was on the same panel as Schleifer said: "You're attacking the science of an independent nonprofit whose entire mission is tied to opening the black box of pricing."
This week, both Regeneron and Sanofi negotiated a value-based payment deal for Praluent with Cigna, one of the largest payers in the nation. Amgen also negotiated a similar deal for Repatha. Under the terms of the deal, the prices of the PCSK9 drugs will be linked to patient cholesterol levels. If patients’ LDL-C levels fail to decrease by at least as much as the reductions seen in clinical trials, the companies will further discount the drugs.