A Survey of Pulmonologists and Managed Care Organization Pharmacy and Medical Directors
The U.S. market for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) therapies consists entirely of symptomatic treatments, namely bronchodilators and anti-inflammatory agents, which improve patients’ quality of life (QOL) but do not alter the natural history of the disease. Surveyed physicians tend to favor well-established treatments, such as the long-acting muscarinic antagonist (LAMA) Spiriva (Boehringer Ingelheim’s Spiriva) and the long-acting beta2 agonist (LABA)/inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) fixed-dose combination (FDC) Advair (GlaxoSmithKline’s salmeterol/fluticasone propionate). In addition, alternative FDCs such as Anoro (GlaxoSmithKline/Theravance’s vilanterol/umeclidinium) are beginning to gain market share, and generic versions of popular agents are expected in the coming years. Changes in prescribing habits to accommodate the new therapies are expected, and payers will likely update their formularies to accommodate the launch of multiple FDCs and generics. In this report, we gauge physicians’ and payers’ opinions of current and emerging therapies for COPD to anticipate potential changes in the prescribing patterns and reimbursement climate.