ALEXANDRIA, Va., Oct. 27, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP) today announced a major milestone in the formation of the Biologics & Biosimilars Collective Intelligence Consortium (BBCIC) — a public service initiative that will draw on large sets of de-identified pharmacy and medical data to provide unbiased scientific information on the safety and effectiveness of marketed biosimilars and their corresponding novel biologics. The BBCIC has secured broad financial and in-kind support from multiple health care stakeholders for this effort and will launch research activities in January 2016.
The BBCIC is the only research network dedicated to monitoring biosimilars. The BBCIC framework will apply the same scientific, analytic methods used by the FDA Sentinel initiative, a post-market surveillance system comprising more than 100 million lives that tracks the safety of pharmaceuticals and other therapies once they reach the market.
"The Academy has long been committed to using fact-based evidence to assess the value and effectiveness of medications on the market," AMCP CEO Edith A. Rosato, RPh, IOM, said. "The BBCIC initiative reflects our continuing commitment to public safety and health by evaluating possible issues concerning biologics and biosimilars. The participation and multi-million dollar commitments of leading health care stakeholders is indeed a major milestone for this ambitious initiative."
The BBCIC involves a collaboration of managed care organizations, integrated delivery systems, pharmacy benefit management firms, research institutions and pharmaceutical companies. To date the following organizations have made financial and in-kind commitments: AbbVie, Amgen, Anthem, Boehringer Ingelheim, Express Scripts, Inc., Group Health Research Institute, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, HealthPartners, Henry Ford Health System and Merck. Other BBCIC founding partners are finalizing contracts.
The effort comes as the first biosimilar has entered the U.S. market and others are anticipated to follow. Biosimilars have been available in Europe for the past decade.
As more biosimilars come to market, physicians, patients and other stakeholders will have questions about the safety and effectiveness of these products.
"AMCP believes that the public's and health care community's understanding of biosimilars will be enhanced by the BBCIC's balanced, scientific approach," Rosato explained. "If biosimilars are actively monitored after their introduction for safety and effectiveness, this will answer questions and concerns, leading to their greater acceptance and adoption in the U.S."
Biosimilars are less expensive, highly similar, independently developed versions of original biological medicines. "Specialty biologics have expanded patient access to safe and effective treatments for some of the most pernicious chronic diseases. By bending the cost curve for specialty drugs, biosimilars offer the opportunity to expand patient assess to biologics," Rosato added.
For more information, visit www.BBCIC.org.
AMCP is a professional association of pharmacists and other health care practitioners who serve society by the application of sound medication management principles and strategies to improve health care for all. The Academy's 7,000 members develop a diversified range of clinical, educational and business management services and strategies on behalf of the more than 200 million Americans covered by a managed care pharmacy benefit. www.amcp.org.
SOURCE Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy