Gilead prices COVID-19 drug candidate remdesivir at $2340 per patient

Henrietta Brewer
June 29, 2020

Once supply is less tight and Gilead starts selling the drug in normal distribution channels, the list price for private insurance companies and other commercial payers in the US will be $520 a vial, or $3,120 for a five-day course.

The per-vial price outside of private insurance will be $390, Gilead added.

The maker of remdesivir, the first drug that showed promise in treating coronavirus infections, will charge USA hospitals $3,120 for a patient with private insurance, the drug company announced Monday.

After an global COVID-19 drug trial showed that the medication helped some patients recover more quickly, the Food and Drug Administration gave the remdesivir authorization for emergency use in treating coronavirus cases.

The majority of patients treated with remdesivir will receive a five-day treatment course using six vials of remdesivir, the company said.

In a statement released on Monday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said that it has secured more than 500,000 treatment courses of the drug for American hospitals through September.

The maker of a drug revealed to shorten restoration time for seriously unwell COVID-19 individuals claims it will demand $two, 340 for a regular remedy study course for men and women protected by federal government wellness applications in the United States and other formulated worldwide locations.

Other advocates, including consumer-rights group Public Citizen, have said the drug should just cost $1 a day based on calculations that it could be manufactured at scale by generic drugmakers for this amount.

Given through an IV, the medication is created to interfere with an enzyme that reproduces viral genetic material. In a USA government-led study, remdesivir shortened recovery time by 31% - 11 days on average versus 15 days for those given just usual care. The formal go-ahead by the European Commission is expected to follow soon.

The drug is has crisis use authorization in the USA and Gilead has used for total acceptance.

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), a nonprofit group that analyzes drug prices, said remdesivir would be cost-effective in a range of $4,580 to $5,080 if it saved lives. But new information that a affordable steroid known as dexamethasone increases survival suggests remdesivir really should be priced among $two, 520 and $two, 800, the team explained.

'This is a high price for a drug that has not been shown to reduce mortality, ' Dr Steven Nissen, chairman of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic said. "It was developed using significant taxpayer funding". "Public funding was indispensable, and government scientists led the early drug discovery team".

O'Day said pricing of the drug was a balancing act.

'The price might have been fine if the company had demonstrated that the treatment saved lives. The investigational antiviral therapy has received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the FDA to treat COVID-19.

Gilead says it will have spent US$1 billion ($1.45 billion) on developing and making the drug by the end of this year.

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