THOUSAND OAKS, Calif./PRNewswire/ -- Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN) today announced that as part of the Company's commitment to improve patient affordability for an innovative biologic medicine for people with high cholesterol who are at risk for heart attacks and strokes, all Repatha® (evolocumab) device options, including the Pre-Filled Syringe and Pushtronex® (on-body infusor with prefilled cartridge), are now available at a 60 percent reduced list price of $5,850 per year. The most commonly used delivery system, the Repatha SureClick® autoinjector, was made available at the lower list price of $5,850 on Oct. 24, 2018. The lower priced Repatha options are identical to the Repatha options currently available, but have been introduced to reduce out-of-pocket costs for patients, especially Medicare patients.
"Every 40 seconds someone in America has a heart attack or stroke making cardiovascular disease one of the country's most significant health challenges," said Murdo Gordon, executive vice president of Global Commercial Operations at Amgen. "Repatha can help to address this significant public health issue, which is why we are working hard to improve patient affordability by lowering Repatha's list price to improve patient co-pays, especially for Medicare patients."
As of today, 80 percent of current Repatha Medicare patients have access to Repatha at the new lower list price through their plans. Additionally, more patients can now fill a Repatha prescription at a retail pharmacy because a number of large payers are reclassifying Repatha as a non-specialty therapy.
"The lower list price announced in October has been received very positively by patients, physicians and payers, and we are already seeing a noticable impact for patients," said Gordon. "However, more must be done to help more patients get to a low fixed co-pay. We need continued engagement from all stakeholders – from healthcare professionals to payers to plans and to government agencies – to help ensure patients benefit from the lower list price to reduce their out-of-pocket costs."
The Pushtronex system is a hands-free device that provides 420 mg of Repatha once monthly in a single dose. The device adheres to the body during administration. Patients are able to perform moderate physical activities (such as walking, reaching or bending) as the 420 mg of Repatha is delivered subcutaneously. The prefilled syringe and SureClick are administered once every two weeks.
Patients or physicians who need help understanding these changes can contact RepathaReady® (1-844-REPATHA). The RepathaReady program provides a comprehensive suite of services to help patients and providers, including a Repatha $5 co-pay card for eligible commercially insured patients, insurance coverage support and injection support. Amgen also provides patient assistance for its medicines marketed in the U.S. in a variety of ways, including free medicines through the Amgen Safety Net Foundation for qualifying individuals with no or limited drug coverage.
About Repatha® (evolocumab)
Repatha® (evolocumab) is a human monoclonal antibody that inhibits proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9). Repatha binds to PCSK9 and inhibits circulating PCSK9 from binding to the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor (LDLR), preventing PCSK9-mediated LDLR degradation and permitting LDLR to recycle back to the liver cell surface. By inhibiting the binding of PCSK9 to LDLR, Repatha increases the number of LDLRs available to clear LDL from the blood, thereby lowering LDL-C levels.
Repatha is approved in more than 60 countries, including the U.S., Japan, Canada and in all 28 countries that are members of the European Union. Applications in other countries are pending.
Important U.S. Product Information
Repatha is a PCSK9 (proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin type 9) inhibitor antibody indicated:
The safety and effectiveness of Repatha have not been established in pediatric patients with HoFH who are younger than 13 years old or in pediatric patients with primary hyperlipidemia or HeFH.
Important U.S. Safety Information
Contraindication: Repatha is contraindicated in patients with a history of a serious hypersensitivity reaction to Repatha. Serious hypersensitivity reactions including angioedema have occurred in patients treated with Repatha.
Allergic reactions: Hypersensitivity reactions (e.g. angioedema, rash, urticaria) have been reported in patients treated with Repatha, including some that led to discontinuation of therapy. If signs or symptoms of serious allergic reactions occur, discontinue treatment with Repatha, treat according to the standard of care, and monitor until signs and symptoms resolve.
Adverse reactions: The most common adverse reactions (>5% of patients treated with Repatha and occurring more frequently than placebo) were: nasopharyngitis, upper respiratory tract infection, influenza, back pain, and injection site reactions.
From a pool of the 52-week trial and seven 12-week trials: Local injection site reactions occurred in 3.2% and 3.0% of Repatha-treated and placebo-treated patients, respectively. The most common injection site reactions were erythema, pain, and bruising.
Allergic reactions occurred in 5.1% and 4.7% of Repatha-treated and placebo-treated patients, respectively. The most common allergic reactions were rash (1.0% versus 0.5% for Repatha and placebo, respectively), eczema (0.4% versus 0.2%), erythema (0.4% versus 0.2%), and urticaria (0.4% versus 0.1%).
The most common adverse reactions in the Cardiovascular Outcomes Trial (>5% of patients treated with Repatha and occurring more frequently than placebo) were: diabetes mellitus (8.8% Repatha, 8.2% placebo), nasopharyngitis (7.8% Repatha, 7.4% placebo), and upper respiratory tract infection (5.1% Repatha, 4.8% placebo).
Among the 16,676 patients without diabetes mellitus at baseline, the incidence of new-onset diabetes mellitus during the trial was 8.1% in patients assigned to Repatha compared with 7.7% in those assigned to placebo.
Homozygous Familial Hypercholesterolemia (HoFH): The adverse reactions that occurred in at least two patients treated with Repatha and more frequently than placebo were: upper respiratory tract infection, influenza, gastroenteritis, and nasopharyngitis.
Immunogenicity: Repatha is a human monoclonal antibody. As with all therapeutic proteins, there is a potential for immunogenicity with Repatha.
Please contact Amgen Medinfo at 800-77-AMGEN (800-772-6436) or 844-REPATHA (844-737-2842) regarding Repatha availability or find more information, including full Prescribing Information, at www.amgen.com and www.Repatha.com.
About Amgen in the Cardiovascular Therapeutic Area
Building on more than three decades of experience in developing biotechnology medicines for patients with serious illnesses, Amgen is dedicated to addressing important scientific questions to advance care and improve the lives of patients with cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Amgen's research into cardiovascular disease, and potential treatment options, is part of a growing competency at Amgen that utilizes human genetics to identify and validate certain drug targets. Through its own research and development efforts, as well as partnerships, Amgen is building a robust cardiovascular portfolio consisting of several approved and investigational molecules in an effort to address a number of today's important unmet patient needs, such as high cholesterol and heart failure.
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Amgen is committed to unlocking the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing and delivering innovative human therapeutics. This approach begins by using tools like advanced human genetics to unravel the complexities of disease and understand the fundamentals of human biology.
Amgen focuses on areas of high unmet medical need and leverages its expertise to strive for solutions that improve health outcomes and dramatically improve people's lives. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen has grown to be one of the world's leading independent biotechnology companies, has reached millions of patients around the world and is developing a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential.