Daily Management Review

Price Of Covid-19 Rug Remdesivir From Gilead Set At $2,340 Per Patient In US


Price Of Covid-19 Rug Remdesivir From Gilead Set At $2,340 Per Patient In US
The price for its Covid-19 fighting medicine remdesivir has been priced at $2,340 by Gilead Sciences Inc for a five-day treatment in the United States and in some of the other developed countries.
But this pricing strategy also raises the prospect of the treatment facing severe challenge from a cheaper medicine against the novel coronavirus.
The price cap for the treatment as recommended by the US drug pricing research group, the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), last week was at $5,080 per course and the price set for the treatment by the company is lower than that threshold.
The pricing is more in line with a lower range of around $2,520 to $2,800 suggested by ICER which could be the pricing of the cheap steroid dexamethasone which is not patent protected after it is cleared for use in Covid-19 cases.
Ever since the drug remdesivir was found to have clinically shorten hospital recovery times for serious patients, the drug has been at the forefront of the fight against Covid-19.  The treatment has also been approved for application for some patients in emergency conditions in the United States.
However, the drug dexamethasone has been hailed as a potential breakthrough treatment against Covid-19.
Gilead said that $520 per vial will be the price for remdesivir price for US private insurance companies which is equivalent to a total cost of $3,120 per patient for a treatment course of six vials.
Gilead added, the price of the drug per-vial for patients outside of private insurance will be $390.
The company can generate about $2.3 billion from the drug in 2020 which will help the company to offset more than $1 billion in development and distribution costs for the drug, estimated analysts at Royal Bank of Canada. They added that despite this prospect a rise in the shares of Gilead shares was limited since there were many vaccines and better treatments being prepared and that can hit the market soon enough.
An agreement with the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has been struck by Gilead. The agency and states are set to manage allocation of the treatment to hospitals until the end of September. The agency said that it has got access to more than 500,000 treatment courses of the drug which would be distributed to US hospitals through September.
HHS said that the number of drugs that it has secured from the company accounted for almost 100 per cent of the projected production of the drug by Gilead for July – at 94,200 treatment courses, as well as about 90 per cent of the total treatment manufactured in August and September. HHS has also secured rights to an allocation of the drugs for clinical trials.
Gilead said HHS will stop managing the allocation after this, once supplies are less constrained.
The price of remdesivir has been debated intensely since it was approved by US regulators for emergency usage for some Covid-19 patients in May. It is also essential for Gilead to not appear to be taking advantage of the health crisis, experts said.