All About Multiple Sclerosis

More MS news articles for November 2003

Pharmacy benefit forecast for a new interferon Beta-1a for the treatment of multiple sclerosis: development of a first-line decision tool for pharmacy-budget planning using administrative claims data

J Manag Care Pharm. 2003 Mar-Apr;9(2):168-74
Meyer CM, Phipps R, Cooper D, Wright A.
AdvancePCS, 11350 McCormick Rd., Executive Plaza II, Suite 1000, Hunt Valley, MD 21031, USA


To estimate the incremental change in pharmacy per-member-permonth (PMPM) costs, according to various formulary designs, for a new interferon beta-1a product (IB1a2) using administrative claims data.


Cross-sectional sex- and age-specific disease prevalence and treatment rates for relapsing, remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) patients were measured using integrated medical and pharmacy claims data from a 500,000- member employer group in the southern United States.

Migration to IB1a2 from other drugs in the class was based on market-share data for new and existing RRMS patients.

Duration of therapy was estimated by analyzing claims for current RRMS therapies.

Daily therapy cost was provided by the manufacturer of IB1a2, adjusted for migration from other therapies, and multiplied by estimated volume to predict incremental and total PMPM cost impact.

Market-share estimates were used to develop a PMPM cost forecast for the next 2 years.

PMPM cost estimates were calculated for preferred (copayment tier 2) and nonpreferred (copayment tier 3) formulary designs with and without prior authorization (PA).

One-way sensitivity analysis was performed to assess the influence of product pricing, duration of therapy, and other market factors.


Annual incremental PMPM change was $0.047 for the scenario of third copayment tier with PA.

The incremental change was greatest for those aged 55 to 65 years ($0.056 PMPM) and did not vary greatly by benefit design.

Duration of therapy had the greatest impact on the PMPM estimate across benefit designs.


IB1a2 will not cause a significant change in managed care pharmacy budgets under a variety of formulary conditions, according to this crosssectional analysis of current care-seeking behavior by RRMS patients.

Economic impact may differ if IB1a2 expands RRMS patients.

treatment-seeking behavior.