Single course of Covid-19 treatment to cost $2,340 per patient - Gilead
Gilead Sciences has announced it will charge developed countries $390 a vial for remdesivir, its antiviral drug currently being investigated for use in Covid-19 patients.
The US biopharma said most patients would use the drug for around five days, meaning the price of a single course would equate to $2,340 per patient.
Daniel O’Day, chairman and chief executive, said in an open letter setting out the pricing: “There is no playbook for how to price a new medication in a pandemic. We are aware of the significant responsibility that comes with pricing remdesivir.
“Part of the intent behind our decision was to remove the need for country-by-country negotiations on price. We discounted the price to a level that is affordable for developed countries with the lowest purchasing power. This price will be offer to all governments in developed countries around the world where remdesivir is approved or authorised for use.”
However, in the US, because of the way the American healthcare system is set up, and discounts that government healthcare programmes expect, the price for US private insurance companies will be $520 per vial, O’Day confirmed.
Outside of the developed world, O’Day said Gilead had entered into agreements with generic manufacturers to deliver treatment at a “substantially” lower cost.
Remdesivir was developed to treat Ebola, but clinical trials showed it could reduce recovery times for patients hospitalised with Covid-19. It was granted emergency use authorisation by US regulators in May.
By the end of 2020, Gilead said it expected to have invested more than $1bn on the development and manufacture of remdesivir, “and our commitment to will continue through 2021 and beyond”, O’Day said.
Shares in Gilead rose 3% in pre-market trading.