This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS - See his portfolio and get alerts BEFORE every trade. Learn more NOW!

U.S. Spending On Specialty Medications Likely To Increase 67 Percent Through 2015

ST. LOUIS, May 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. spending on specialty prescription drugs — those used to treat chronic, complex diseases such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis — is projected to increase 67 percent by the end of 2015, according to a forecast released today by Express Scripts (NASDAQ: ESRX).

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20080827/EXPRESSSCRIPTSLOGO)

"As we see what's on the horizon, it's time for employers and health plans to act so they can continue to offer an affordable pharmacy benefit for their members," said Glen Stettin, M.D., Senior Vice President, Clinical, Research and New Solutions at Express Scripts. "New specialty treatments are making a real difference in the lives of patients, but the very high cost of these drugs creates difficult decisions for plan sponsors on which medicines to cover."

Three of the Four Costliest Prescription Therapy Classes Will Be Specialty Conditions

Specialty medicines are prescription drugs that require special handling, distribution and administration. Many specialty medicines are biologics that are delivered via an injection or an infusion and are used to treat chronic, complex diseases.

Prescription drug spending on eight of the top 10 specialty therapy classes will continue to increase over the next three years. This is due to both the robust pipeline of new biologics and physicians delaying treatment of patients until the new drugs are on the market. By the end of 2015, Express Scripts expects that cancer, multiple sclerosis and inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis — all specialty conditions — each will command higher drug spending than any other therapy class except diabetes.

Hepatitis C drug spending likely will quadruple over the next three years, the largest percentage increase by far among therapy classes. By the end of 2015, spending on medications for Hepatitis C will exceed that of much more common conditions, including high blood pressure. This increase will be caused by new interferon-free medications expected to gain FDA-approval in 2014, as well as an increase in diagnoses related to new screening guidelines. 

"Plan sponsors can greatly improve the utilization trend and overall spending that we project over the next three years by taking control of the pharmacy benefit today," said Dr. Stettin. "A recent study demonstrated that payers who implemented Express Scripts' cost management and patient care programs achieved 50 percent lower increases in specialty drug spending than payers who didn't. Importantly, these plan sponsors also saw higher medication adherence rates, which equates to better health outcomes for patients, while saving tens of millions of dollars."

Additionally, hepatitis C patients who received specialized clinical care from Express Scripts' specialty pharmacy, Accredo, were 60 percent more likely to achieve optimal adherence levels, and had more concurrent therapy days – which leads to overall medical savings by curing the patient and avoiding further disease progression.

1 of 3

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Try it NOW
Only $9.95
Try it NOW
14-Days Free
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG

Markets

DOW 17,776.12 -200.19 -1.11%
S&P 500 2,067.89 -18.35 -0.88%
NASDAQ 4,900.8850 -46.5560 -0.94%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs