While the therapeutic value of Vertex Pharmaceuticals’ triplet drug Trikafta for cystic fibrosis is indisputable, the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) issued an affordability alert for the drug. This was despite the watchdog organization also awarding it an “A” rating for the strength of the evidence that the drug improves patient outcomes. “Unfortunately, the manufacturer has leveraged its monopoly to set a price—costing many millions of dollars over the lifetime of an average patient,” David Rind, M.D., ICER’s chief medical officer, said in a statement.
Vertex has set Trikafta’s list price at $311,000. However, according to ICER, the price would need to be lowered to between $67,900 and $85,500 per year in order for the cost of Trikafta to be fully aligned with the health benefits it provides.
Vertex CEO Reshma Kewalramani had this to say: “The rate of uptake for Trikafta and the speed at which we have obtained broad reimbursement speak to the appreciation of the therapeutic profile of this medicine, which we believe will be the foundation of CF therapy for many years to come.” Read more here.