The role of the patient in treatments with biosimilars in Argentina

Biosimilars/General | Posted 21/06/2021 post-comment0 Post your comment

This is how Dr Eduardo Mysler, Medical Director for the Research Medical Organization (OMI) and rheumatology specialist with a long research career reflects that ‘patients have to understand all the details of their disease’.

Patient MD002316 V13C05

Healthcare professionals agree that the education of doctor and patient and the continuous dialogue between all the actors are key to the success of the introduction of therapeutic treatments with biosimilars. ‘There is still a very paternalistic conception from the doctor: the doctor knows and is going to tell the patient what to do. We must, step by step, start changing this conception, empowering the patient, providing information and being partners in the treatment of diseases, even more in those who are chronic. In these types of treatments, when the medication is changed for the patient, it is accepted by most, but it is possible that some patients report the so-called nocebo effect, a detrimental perception when changing a therapy, so when it comes to discussing price, it is important to maintain the value’, Dr Eduardo Mysler continues to explain.

The patient’s organization ‘Donde quiero estar’ started to work in 2006 on a comprehensive containment programme for patients undergoing chemotherapy treatments in the Hospital de Clínicas Buenos Aires. From that experience, other problems began to be seen.

María De San Martin, Founder and Executive Director of the organization ‘Donde quiero estar’, explains that although the reality of the patient is different in different parts of the country due to the existing fragmented health system, some patients did not return to the hospital, others for whom everything was complicated, they lacked a paper, or they were not given their medication. From common sense, she explains, cost reductions have a positive impact on greater access to medicines because you can buy more. It is good that there is competition, as long as the quality is maintained, and the patient must know what all the therapeutic options are.

The objective of ‘Donde quiero estar’ is to systematise all the information in the procedure guides to help those who do not have coverage, the patient who googles, doctors and nurses because the procedure system is changing all the time. The founder states that the organization wants to be useful to the healthcare service provider and to the patient. In this respect, the patient’s perspective for the design of public policies is very important, working groups must be set up, the patient’s perspective must be professionalised. In general, there are many unseen needs and practicalities that can be resolved working together with patients.

Editor’s comment
European Medicines Agency regulatory requirements ensure the same high standards of quality, safety and efficacy for biosimilars as for originator biologicals, and also include a rigorous comparability exercise with the reference product but they are not universally accepted by regulatory bodies outside of the European Union (EU). It should be noted that ‘similar biological therapeutics’ approved in Argentina might not have been authorized if they had been subjected to the strict regulatory processes required for approval of biosimilars in the EU.

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Nos complace anunciar el lanzamiento de nuestra nueva sección 'Foro Latinoamericano' en GaBI. Nuestro objetivo con esta nueva sección es brindarle las últimas noticias y actualizaciones sobre desarrollos de medicamentos genéricos y biosimilares en América Latina en español.

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