KANTAR HEALTH BLOG

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  • Is There a Breaking Point for Immunotherapy Costs?

    by Debbie Warner  |  Jul 1, 2015
    Value was an overarching theme at ASCO 2015 and has been a topic of ongoing focus, as have been the burgeoning pipeline of immunotherapy agents, with the recently launched PD-1 inhibitors, Opdivo® (nivolumab, Bristol Myers Squibb) and Keytruda® (pembrolizumab, Merck), being the highlights of ASCO 2015. Presenter Leonard Saltz, M.D. of Memorial Sloan Kettering praised the clinical value of an Opdivo + Keytruda combination as being “truly, truly remarkable,” but he added that with the combination costing nearly $300,000 (if continued for 11 months) “these drugs cost too much –unsustainable.” While Dr. Saltz is an unabashed critic of cancer drug prices, $300,000 would give most people pause.
  • Like their Western counterparts, doctors in Korea have to now manage newly empowered patients who come to them armed with information and data gathered online. However, unlike their Western counterparts, Korean doctors have a history of being very active online.
  • Anyone following the local elections in South Korea lately will have witnessed the enormous impact that social media has had on the results now that the government has lifted the ban on campaigning via Twitter and other micro-blogging channels such as me2day. As a nation, we’ve always led the way on digital activity with the fastest, most widely available internet services in the world.
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