A strong scientific and public interest exists in the sustainability of pharmaceutical research and development and particularly the issue of anticancer drug prices. Despite of the number of publications, articles seem often opinion-based. To facilitate an evidence-based discourse, we reviewed the literature and produced an inventory of policy proposals. We then analyze the available quantitative evidence.
Due to the broad nature of the research question, a scoping review was performed. We combined multiple search strategies to get a systematic overview of the current body of literature.
In total, we screened 4775 articles and categorized 23 proposals. 22 of 85 included articles used quantitative models. Overall, the quantitative evidence was inconclusive to deduct real world effects and evidence- based recommendations. We however identified promising solutions for further investigation: Royalty payments, prizes and rewards, two-part-pricing, price transparency, increased translational public research, and public clinical trials. At ESMO, we will present this list of promising solutions, their degree of disruptiveness and their empirical evidence. Furthermore, we will share feedback on selected solutions from a survey among European experts in the field of oncology and health regulation. Finally, we will discuss techniques of evidence based solutions facing high complexity and the need of additional data for choosing policy options.
Despite of the urgency of the matte of drug prices, we must realize that system consequences need careful considerations as implications for access and finances can be substantial. We advise testing promising solutions with experiments, dynamic simulations, and policy pilots.
Clinical trial identification
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Has not received any funding.
All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.