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Gilead agrees price cut for Sovaldi in Germany

Same sum as agreed with French government last November

Gilead Sciences 

Gilead Sciences has finally agreed a price of for its hepatitis C virus (HCV) therapy Sovaldi with Germany's main health insurance body after seven months of negotiation.

Gilead has agreed a discounted price of €41,000 per 12-week course of Sovaldi (sofosbuvir) with the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds (GKV-Spitzenverband), which represents insurers providing cover to around 70 million Germans.

Last month, the US pharma company agreed discounted rates with 35% of Germany's insurers, including AOK Rheinland/Hamburg, AOK Lower Saxony, Barmer GEK and Techniker Krankenkasse (TK).

The three-year agreement - which is retrospective to January 23 and comes earlier than expected - represents a considerable discount on the €60,000 per course list price for the drug in Germany and is the same as was agreed with the French government last November. 

It had been anticipated that the two parties would have to go to an arbitration panel in April, but this will no longer be necessary.

The GKV said that reimbursement negotiations for Sovaldi centred on conclusions that the drug represented significant added value for about 5% of HCV patients, some added value benefit for another 35% and no additional value to 60%. 

Its judgment was based on the use of Sovaldi on top of background therapy with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin, so does not take onto account the use of the drug alongside ledipasvir in Gilead's Harvoni product, which can be given without interferon and was approved in the EU last November.

Sovaldi posted sales of more than $10bn in 2014 - its first full year on the market - breaking all prior records for a pharmaceutical product and sparking considerable debate about the pricing of innovative drugs. 

Meanwhile, Harvoni added another $2.1bn to Gilead's HCV franchise, despite only being approved for marketing last October in the US.

Article by
Phil Taylor

13th February 2015

From: Sales

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