Here we describe in detail marketing authorization and reimbursement procedures for medicinal products in Norway, with particular reference to nine novel antibiotics that received marketing authorization between 2005 and 2015. The description illustrates that, in places like Norway, with effective antibiotic stewardship policies and an associated low prevalence of antibiotic-resistant bacterial infection, there is little need for newer, more expensive antibiotics whose therapeutic superiority to existing compounds has not been demonstrated. Since resistance begins to emerge as soon as an antibiotic is used, Norway's practice of leaving newer antibiotics on the shelf is consistent with the goal of prolonging the effectiveness of newer antibiotics. An unintended consequence is that the country has signalled to the private sector that there is little commercial value in novel antibiotics, which may nevertheless still be needed to treat rare or emerging infections. Every country aims to improve infection control and to promote responsible antibiotic use. However, as progress is made, antibiotic-resistant bacteria should become less common and, consequently, the need for, and the commercial value of, novel antibiotics will probably be reduced. Nevertheless, antibiotic innovation continues to be essential. This dilemma will have to be resolved through the introduction of alternative reward systems for antibiotic innovation. The DRIVE-AB (Driving re-investment in research and development and responsible antibiotic use) research consortium in Europe has been tasked with identifying ways of meeting this challenge.
Cites: Lancet. 2005 Feb 12-18;365(9459):579-8715708101
Lag times in the diffusion of new drugs in the hospital setting have both patient care and pharmaceutical industry implications. This two-part series uses diffusion theory to examine differences in the adoption rates of new drugs in British Columbia teaching and non-teaching hospitals. Formulary addition of a new drug by a hospital's Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee was considered the adoption indicator. Time for adoption was defined as the difference between a drug's Canadian market approval date and the date of formulary addition. Surveys were mailed in September 1990 to 41 hospital pharmacies (response rate = 88%), asking respondents to provide formulary inclusion dates of 29 drugs marketed between July 1987 and March 1990. A significant difference (Mann-Whitney U Test, p
Systemic bias in the form of a lack of transparency in the operation of the Canadian drug regulatory agency, the Health Protection Branch, seriously undermines our knowledge of how well the agency is functioning. In recent years this secrecy has combined with deregulation, downsizing, and privatization to compromise safety and could lead to deleterious consequences in the way that drugs are being used. Finally, these forces are threatening the ability of the Health Protection Branch to set priorities for the overall system of drug regulation. This article provides concrete examples of each of these problems. The author then discusses why secrecy is so firmly entrenched in the regulatory approval system, and offers some suggestions on how to tackle this issue.
Abbreviated approval of follow-on biologics involves answering complex scientific, legal, and policy questions. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or the Agency) asserts that it lacks the statutory authority to approve follow-on versions of biologics licensed under Section 351 of the Public Health Service Act (PHSA). Despite persuasive arguments to the contrary the one hundred and tenth Congress entertained four legislative proposals to give FDA this authority, each markedly different. It is no longer a question of "if," but "when" FDA will receive authority to review and license abbreviated applications for follow-on biologics. Any legislation in the one hundred and eleventh Congress must determine: (1) if FDA should be granted authority to develop an abbreviated pathway through rulemaking or guidance; (2) if human clinical trials should be mandatory or discretionary; (3) the feasibility of interchangeability determinations in light of patient safety concerns; (4) the duration of marketing exclusivity for associated products; (5) which products are eligible for follow-on approval; and (6) the degree to which uniformity is achievable between the FD&C Act and the PHSA. This paper recommends the one hundred and eleventh Congress strike a balance between patient safety, incentives for product innovation, price competition, and the need for a flexible, transparent process that capitalizes on FDA's growing expertise with follow-on biologics approvals under Section 505(b)(2) of the FD&C Act.
This article compares the Swedish Medical Products Agency's (MPA) decision to switch omeprazole from prescription (Rx) to over-the-counter (OTC) status with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel's decision not to authorize the switch. The agencies' differing perspectives on efficacy, safety, labeling, and clinical trial requirements are evaluated with regard to the Rx-to-OTC switch process in general and omeprazole's case in particular. The FDA and MPA regulatory policies on switches are substantially divergent. The FDA maintains a stricter set of switch guidelines and requirements than the MPA. One could infer from this that the FDA is more risk-averse than the MPA. Nevertheless, the omeprazole switch in Sweden appears to be an exception in that it contrasts with the MPA's historical reluctance to switch the Rx status of medications. Cost considerations appear to have triggered the omeprazole switch, making it a special case. The lessons to be drawn from this case study are both specific and general. At the specific level, this case study suggests the MPA's decision to switch omeprazole was prompted by economic considerations, whereas the FDA's mandate did not allow cost to affect its decision on omeprazole. At a general level, this case study indicates that the differences between the FDA and MPA with respect to their regulatory policies on switches and their mandates apply not only to omeprazole but also to the dozens of switches currently under consideration by the respective regulatory agencies.