GPhA Launches Biosimilars Council to Educate and Advocate for Patient Access

Today, the Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA) announced that it has launched a new industry group that will educate and advocate for patient access to biosimilars.

The Association said that it has launched the Biosimilars Council, a division of GPhA. The GPhA Biosimilars Council will begin operations immediately. One of its initial offerings is a new educational handbook titled, The Next Frontier for Improved Access to Medicines: Biosimilars and Interchangeable Biologic Products. The publication reviews the benefits and science behind biosimilar products and who will benefit from access to these medicines. Additionally, it will outline the legal and regulatory framework and the quality manufacturing and development process in approachable language.

“Following unanimous Board of Directors’ approval, the Biosimilars Council is the culmination of the Association’s longstanding and unwavering commitment to patient access to safe, affordable and lifesaving biosimilar medicines. The GPhA Biosimilars Council is designed to meet the unique needs of healthcare companies as they navigate this emerging space,” said Craig Wheeler, GPhA Board Chairman, and President and CEO of Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. “In addition to being a voice with policymakers, this new division will be an invaluable partner for patients, providers, manufacturers, consumer groups, and stakeholders from all corners of the supply chain seeking to stay apprised of critical developments regarding biosimilars. The GPhA Biosimilars Council also will be a key resource for organizations seeking relationship building opportunities, and a forum for in-depth scientific, regulatory, legislative and policy discussions.”

The group will consist of manufacturers and stakeholders working to ensure a positive regulatory, reimbursement, political and policy environment that supports patient access to biosimilar products, which are expected to be more affordable than their biologic counterparts. According to GPhA, the Biosimilars Council is the industry’s first educational resource for the general public and patient groups seeking information about the safety and effectiveness of biosimilars.

GPhA has recently changed its bylaws to include a Biosimilar Board, elected by members of the Biosimilars Council. The Board will develop GPhA’s biosimilar activities and programming consistent with the Association’s mission and Board of Directors. GPhA believes that the new division, with a roster of committed members and full start-up funding, will substantially supplement the Association’s existing strong regulatory, government affairs, policy, communications/education team to support anticipated activities. The Biosimilars Council welcomes all biosimilar companies dedicated to bringing more affordable biosimilar medicines to patients in the US, as it works to continue its leadership in supporting this emerging industry.

“GPhA and its members historically have been the industry pioneers on biosimilars, beginning with their role as the fundamental organizing force behind the law which created the biosimilar pathway. The Biosimilars Council is the next evolution in this leadership, and will ensure these new medicines will deliver tremendous benefits for both our health and our healthcare system,” said Ralph G. Neas, President and CEO of GPhA. “We look forward to continuing to work with our strategic partners and all stakeholders who share our vision of the transformative potential of biosimilars and interchangeable biologics.”

Source: Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA)

Last updated: 4/16/15; 1:35pm EST

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