OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess the budget impact of introducing the proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 inhibitors (PCSK9i) alirocumab and evolocumab to market for the treatment of adults with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia or clinical atherosclerotic cardiovascular (CV) disease requiring additional lowering of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C).
METHODS: A 3-year model estimated the costs of lipid-modifying therapy (LMT) and CV events to a hypothetical US health plan of 1 million members, comparing two scenarios-with and without the availability of PCSK9i as add-on therapy to statins. Proportions of patients with uncontrolled LDL-C despite receiving statins, and at risk of CV events, were estimated from real-world data. Total undiscounted annual LMT costs (2017 prices, including PCSK9i costs of $14,563.50), dispensing and healthcare costs, including the costs of CV events, were estimated for all prevalent patients in the target population, based on baseline risk factors. Maximum PCSK9i utilization of 1-5% over 3 years according to risk group (following the same pattern as current ezetimibe use), and 5-10% as a secondary scenario, were assumed.
RESULTS: Total healthcare budget impacts per target patient (and per member) per month for years 1, 2 and 3 were $3.62($0.10), $7.22($0.20) and $10.79($0.30), respectively, assuming 1-5% maximum PCSK9i utilization, and $15.81($0.44), $31.52($0.88) and $47.12($1.31), respectively, assuming 5-10% utilization. Results were sensitive to changes in model timeframe, years to maximum PCSK9i utilization and PCSK9i costs.
CONCLUSIONS: The budget impact of PCSK9i as add-on therapy to statins for patients with hypercholesterolemia is relatively low compared with published estimates for other specialty biologics. Drug cost rebates and discounts are likely to further reduce budget impact.