He said, she said

Apparently, regulators in Britain don’t think the price of biosimilar products is low enough. According to a consultation, “the average price decline upon loss of exclusivity is significantly lower for biological medicines than for non-biological medicines, with a ~70% average drop in expenditure for non-biological medicines compared to a ~45% drop for biological medicines.” One of the issues here is using averages. According to Warwick Smith, of the British Biosimilars Association, “we have seen price reductions of more than 80% for some products” and “these proposed changes will significantly impact biosimilars and manufacturers may be unable to launch products as a consequence. This could also impact the potential patient benefits of these medicines and threaten Simon Stevens’ objective of £300 million of savings in the next three years.” Everyone, simmer down and remember no biosimilars, no cost savings – period.

UK says “yes” to more taxes

Wait what? Yep, this refreshing portrait of self-awareness is brought to you by a recent survey of 1,000 adults across Britain. You might recall from a previous InsightCity article, the UK faces some serious shortfalls in providing for an aging population, not the least of which is a potential GP shortage. The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) and the Health Foundation published a report in which they outline these pressures. Back to the survey. The data show 77% support or strongly support an increase in UK spending on public healthcare by 4% a year over the next 15 years and 82% support a ~4% spending hike for social care. This translates into each UK household “contributing” around £2,000. We’re not sure that figure was disclosed to the survey respondents when they were indicating their “support” for the increase in spending, so there’s that.

National health system bracketology

If you’re one of the estimated 60 million Americans who fill out a NCAA basketball bracket each year, then this story will resonate with you. But, you’re about to feel much worse about your health system. The New York Times decided to play bracketology with the health systems from Canada, Britain, Singapore, Germany, Switzerland, France, Australia and the U.S. by having five experts pick which system was better in head-to-head match-ups, with the winner advancing. In the end, Switzerland won, with Germany as a close second. France defeated the US in round two by a 3-2 vote. This writer is quick to acknowledge there are many different lenses through which a system can be evaluated. InsightCity readers, what do you say? Bring on the comments.