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Rep. Schrader Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Make Biosimilar Drugs More Affordable for Patients

For Immediate Release

September 20, 2019

Contact: Larkin Parker, 202-225-5711



Rep. Schrader Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Make Biosimilar Drugs More Affordable for Patients

 

Congressman Kurt Schrader (OR-05) and Congressman Greg Gianforte (R-MT) introduced the bipartisan Bolstering Innovative Options to Save Immediately on Medicines (BIOSIM) Act.This legislation will increase reimbursements for biosimilar drugs and boost their utilization by doctors.

“Biosimilars have long struggled to grow in utilization and the BIOSIM Act will help them gain market share by providing an incentive for biosimilars that are lower cost than the biologic,” said Congressman Kurt SchraderCosts for patients and the healthcare system will go down with the transition to greater use of lower cost biosimilar drugs. There is no doubt that this bill is a win-win for patients and providers.” 

“I often hear from Montanans about the skyrocketing costs of their prescription drugs and the challenges they face to pay for them,” said Congressman Greg Gianforte. “This bipartisan bill provides incentives for using biosimilar drugs over biologics. With increased use of biosimilars, patients will see lower out-of-pocket costs for the medications they need, and taxpayers will save money.”

“The National Organization for Rare Disorders recognizes that lower-cost, safe, and effective generic and biosimilar medicines are critical for helping rare disease patients access the medicines they need. NORD applauds Representative Schrader and Representative Gianforte for introducing the BIOSIM Act, which would increase the add-on payment for biosimilars to ASP plus 8% (of the reference product ASP) for five years. Innovative policies, like the BIOSIM Act, create incentives for the uptake of biosimilars. With improved access and usage, biosimilars could play a significant role in decreasing overall drug costs.” 

"Caring Ambassadors Program applauds Representative Schrader and Representative Gianforte for introducing this cost-saving measure. Increased use and competition in biosimilars will drive down prices and provide easier access for patients facing severe life-threatening illnesses, like lung cancer. Biologics offer great hope to patients, but they are also some of the most expensive therapies available.  Patients should not have to go through a financial crisis due to a cancer diagnosis.  This legislation is a win-win for patients, physicians, and the healthcare system."

The Bolstering Innovative Options to Save Immediately on Medicines Act will temporarily increase the reimbursement for biosimilar drugs from the average sales price (ASP) of the drug plus six percent to the average sales price (ASP) of the drug plus eight percent for five years to help increase their utilization by doctors. Currently, Medicare patients pay a twenty percent coinsurance on Part B drugs which both biologics and biosimilar are. Biologics are higher cost drugs and the result of this legislation would be a reduction inpatient cost-sharing by increasing the use of lower cost biosimilars. This will result in savings for the government and patients.