ICER Devalues People With Rheumatoid Arthritis

  • LinkedIn | by: Robert M. Goldberg |
  • 03/29/2017
ICER recently had a meeting to discuss its latest study: "Targeted Immune Modulators for Rheumatoid Arthritis: Effectiveness & Value."  Don't bother reading it. It ends like every other ICER report: It concludes no medicine is cost effective and it uses methodology that no economist can replicate. ICER's 'studies' are the cold fusion experiments of health care economics. 

I have released a report discussing the impact of ICERs approach on patients. It concludes that applying ICER's cost-effectiveness standard to all biologics developed for RA since 2000 (none are cost-effective according to ICER) would have harmed a lot of people with RA.

Between 1999 and 2014 there would have been 46689 more deaths under an ICER regime. Additionally, research suggests that since 1999 the life expectancy of people with RA who used new medicines could expect to live 10 years longer than those not treated. Hence under an ICER regime people with RA would have 466894 fewer life years (46689 x 10). 

Going forward, ICER claims new RA drugs are not cost effective either. 

ICER estimates that only 97000 people year for five years (486000) with RA would get two new drugs it reviewed: baricitinib and sarilumab. Both medicines were tested in people with RA whose disease didn’t respond to any other treatments or couldn’t tolerate any other medicines. 

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