A recent article “Lilly’s new strategy build around head-to-head drug trials” by J.K. Wall used extensive quotes by Visante’s Jim Jorgenson to describe the new reality of drug trials and the companies’ strategy to win market share. It turns out that drugs can no longer be tested against placebos to demonstrate superior pharmacotherapy effects. Instead, they must test against the leading drugs in that class on the market. This is what the US Food and Drug Administration would like to see with survival of the best and most successful drugs taking the prize.
Visante’s President, James Jorgenson was asked what this could mean to healthcare providers. His response was that “Health systems have always preferred to have that kind of data. But there’s never been the pressure that there is now.” Jim’s experience as a former chief pharmacy officer at Indian University Health is that hospital chains will see reimbursement from government programs — which account for roughly half of all spending – to drop by thirty percent over the next three years.
The drug companies’ strategy is that if they can show their products’ superiority in controlled trials, then they stand to win the battle of market share. As a representative of hospital and health systems pharmacists, Jim stated that “if drug companies can show their drugs help limit [diabetics with uncontrolled blood sugar levels] outcomes, then hospitals and health plans will be more than eager to pay for these drugs.”
Jorgenson summarized the pharmacist’s position by stating “As providers, we have to do a much better job in delineating which therapies are actually going to improve our health system performance. We need to know which interventions are the most significant and in what circumstances.”
Following each of these trials and their outcomes is a timely but burdensome process for many providers of healthcare services. Visante provides a service that reviews the professional literature and develops evidence tables of these findings.