News | September 14, 2018

Multi-Stakeholder Workshop On Biosimilar Medicines A Crucial Milestone In Achieving Increased Patient Access To Biological Therapies

  • The European Commission recently organised its 4th annual workshop on biosimilar medicines, bringing together patients, specialist nurses, doctors, pharmacists, payers, academics, public authorities, and industry across Europe.
  • Stakeholders discussed the role of biosimilar medicines in increasing cancer patient access to oncology biologics, as well as sustainable procurement policies and the importance of educational initiatives.
  • All participants welcome the European Commission and European Medicines Agency’s initiatives to further promote the exchange of information and learning regarding biosimilars among stakeholders.

The European biosimilar medicines stakeholder community welcomes the 4th annual workshop on biosimilar medicines, organised recently by the European Commission Directorate General for the Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW) on access to biosimilar medicines in Europe. This workshop is a key milestone in stakeholder dialogue to advance the potential of biosimilar medicines and the role they play in increasing patient access to biological therapies in Europe. The event brought together patients, specialist nurses, doctors, pharmacists, payers, academics, public authorities, press and industry to share experiences with biosimilar medicines across Europe.

The event has provided a great platform for information sharing on topics such as the role biosimilar medicines will play in cancer care, the importance of sustainable procurement practices for a healthy, competitive, off patent biologics and biosimilar medicines landscape and of education in improving stakeholder literacy on biosimilar medicines.

The European biosimilar medicines stakeholder community supports steps which can lead to increased access to biosimilar medicines, including increased competition in the biologics markets and the associated contribution to the sustainability of healthcare systems.

The vital work of the European Commission and European Medicines Agency has contributed to the increased acceptance and trust in biosimilar medicines in Europe. The broad range of stakeholders that attended the event reflects the increasing interest in and relevance of biosimilar medicines in Europe.

About Signatory Associations
Medicines for Europe represents the generic, biosimilar and value added medicines industries across Europe. Its vision is to provide sustainable access to high quality medicines, based on 5 important pillars: patients, quality, value, sustainability and partnership. Its members employ 160,000 people at over 350 manufacturing and R&D sites in Europe, and invest up to 17% of their turnover in medical innovation.

The Biosimilar Medicines Group is a sector group of Medicines for Europe and represents the leading companies developing, manufacturing and marketing biosimilar medicines across Europe. Our members bring competition to the biologic medicines market, thereby increasing access to highly innovative medical treatments to patients in Europe and around the world, and supporting the sustainability of the European healthcare systems.

The European Association of Hospital Pharmacists (EAHP) is a not-for-profit organisation that defends the interests of more than 21.000 European hospital pharmacists from its 35- member associations. EAHP works to develop knowledge on hospital pharmacy to ease the improvement of care and outcomes for patients in the hospital setting. We achieve this through science, practice, research, education, as well as sharing best-practice and responsibility with other healthcare professionals.

The European CanCer Organisation (ECCO) is a not-for-profit federation that exists to uphold the right of all European cancer patients to the best possible treatment and care, promoting interaction between all organisations involved in cancer at European level. Through its 24 Member Societies - representing over 150 000 professionals - ECCO is the only multidisciplinary organisation that connects and responds to all stakeholders in oncology Europe-wide. It does this by creating awareness of patients’ needs and wishes, encouraging progressive thinking in cancer policy, training and education and promoting European cancer research, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and quality care through the organisation of international multidisciplinary meetings. www.ecco-org.eu

The European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) represents the research-based pharmaceutical industry operating in Europe. Through its direct membership of 33 national associations and 40 leading pharmaceutical companies, EFPIA is the voice on the EU scene of 1,900 companies committed to researching, developing and bringing to patients new medicines that will improve health and the quality of life around the world.

The European Hospital and Healthcare Federation (HOPE) is a European nonprofit association of Belgian status, created in 1966. HOPE includes national hospital associations or representatives from national hospital owners’ organisations of the 28 Member States of the European Union (as well as from Switzerland and the Republic of Serbia as observer members). HOPE members are covering almost 80% of hospital activity in the EU. HOPE promotes improvements in the health of citizens throughout Europe. HOPE fosters efficiency, effectiveness and humanity in the organisation and operation of hospital and healthcare services.

The European Patients’ Forum (EPF) is an umbrella organisation that works with patients’ groups in public health and health advocacy across Europe. Our 72 members represent specific chronic disease groups at EU level or are national coalitions of patients.

The European Social Insurance Platform AISBL (ESIP) represents a strategic alliance of over 50 national statutory social security organisations in 15 EU Member States and Switzerland. ESIP's mission is to preserve high profile social security for Europe, to reinforce solidarity based social insurance systems, and to maintain European social protection quality.

For more information, visit http://www.esip.eu.

*ESIP members support this statement in so far as the subject matter lies within their field of competence

The European Society of Oncology Pharmacy (ESOP), founded in 2000 in Prague, is the largest organization of oncology pharmacists in the world with almost 3000 members from 47 countries. The aim of ESOP is to support optimal treatment for cancer patients, to develop and promote clinical and oncology pharmacy practice through education and training, safe handling and administration of drugs, quality management, research and development and pharmaceutical care. For more information, visit www.esop.li.

European Specialist Nurses Organisations (ESNO) is a European non-profit organisation for specialist nurses. The responsibilities for higher standard of care is increasing and nurses play a role in it and in relation to medication as frontline professionals with education, communication and information on medication. With a special focus group ESNO has managed to create a Information and Communication guide on switch management.

SOURCE: Medicines For Europe AISBL