Survey: Half of U.S. docs expect to prescribe more biosims in the next three years

Good news for biosimilar makers: Nearly half of U.S. docs are already planning to prescribe the knockoff drugs in the near term, according to a new survey.

As the availability of biosimilars increases over the next three years, almost 50% of physicians polled by InCrowd said they expect their prescribing of the meds to increase, too. Seventeen percent went as far as to say that writing scripts for the copycat treatments would become the norm over that time frame.

While those figures mean that more than half of doctors don't see their biosimilar prescribing habits ramping up, biosimilar makers are hoping to see those opinions change as the therapies take flight. Right now, Novartis' ($NVS) Zarxio--a copy of Amgen's ($AMGN) Neupogen--is the only one on the market, but a slew of companies are racing to get their own candidates through development--and to grab a share of their reference products' blockbuster revenues.

Biosim makers are hoping that added awareness will help turn the tide when it comes to prescribing, but other recent surveys have shown that they still have some work to do. Last August, a QuantiaMD survey of 300 primary care physicians and specialists found that only 38% of respondents could even name a biosimilar product under FDA consideration, and 22% of those polled weren't familiar with the term "biosimilar" at all.

As Diane Hayes, InCrowd's president and cofounder, pointed out in a statement, though, while it's important to get doctors on board, they're not the only part of the equation. "The key will lie in how payers decide to reimburse for biosimilars and their biologic counterparts," she said.

- read the release from InCrowd

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