As part of our Healthy Outlook: Conquering Cancer in the 21st Century blog series, we wanted to highlight a new report from IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics that examines the global market for oncology treatment. According to the report, cancer care is evolving and improving as new therapies emerge and innovation continues, underscoring the importantance of a competitive biopharmaceutical marketplace to control costs and push biopharmaceutical manufacturers to innovate. Here are some key highlights from the report:
- Innovation is occurring at a rapid pace, creating future promise for patients and their families: IMS found two-thirds of Americans diagnosed with cancer can now expect to live five or more years, while 25 years ago just over half of patients had a five-year prognosis. The increase in life expectancy is a testament to new treatment options and improvements on existing therapies. Innovations such as improved biomarker data, combination therapies and new immunotherapies are leading to more effective treatments for cancer.
- The biopharmaceutical marketplace will continue to be competitive: The strong pipeline for cancer medicines is expected to increase competition in the next five years, with multiple medicines competing to launch first in their class and then competing for patients within and across classes. At the same time, new competition from biosimilars and small molecule generics will further temper growth on oncology medicines over the period.
- Copays for stage IV cancer medicines are rising: IMS found out-of-pocket costs for patients treated with intravenous medicines rose 71 percent from 2012 to 2013, a steep increase that may hinder their access to needed medicines.
- The share of spending on cancer medicines represents only a small increase in the total spending on medicines: In the past five years, the U.S. has seen a modest increase in oncology medicine spending (not including discounts and rebates), from 10.7 percent to 11.3 percent.
With innovation progressing rapidly, we have more hope than ever before for clinical outcomes when patients have access to treatments. We will continue to provide new information on the state of cancer care and expectations for the future, so be sure to check back in with the Healthy Outlook series.