The effects of disease cross-coverage by dupilumab on the costs sustained by the Italian National Health Service
Background and research question: Label extension for treatments and the relevant disease cross-coverage may produce an economic benefit. This paper assesses this benefit for dupilumab in the perspective of the Italian National Health Service. Dupilumab was approved for reimbursement for severe atopic dermatitis (AD), severe and refractory asthma and chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (CRSwNP). The analysis focused on the crowding-out effect of dupilumab on alternative treatments.
Methods: The research relied on a simplified budget impact model. The model was populated by data from published evidence and relied on three alternative scenarios for market penetration (15%-30%-100%).
Results: Avoidable direct health annual costs due to cross-coverage for (i) asthma in patients treated for AD ranged from 0.46 to 3.43 million euros, (ii) asthma in patients treated for CRSwNP ranged from 0.08 to 0.88 million euros, (iii) CRSwNP in patients treated for asthma ranged from 0.41 to 4.05 million euros respectively. The total economic benefit ranges from 0.95 to 8.36 million euros.
Discussion: The research estimated the crowding-out effect of dupilumab on alternative treatments. It did not incorporate avoided/incremental events due to a possible better/worse risk-benefit profile of dupilumab vs alternative treatments and the economic benefit of cross-coverage on lower diseases severity (for example mild asthma). Nonetheless, the analysis relies on the best available evidence for Italy to shed light on a topic which has not been sufficiently investigated, and provides data that will be potentially very important for policy-makers, payers and those who manage new treatments.
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