A Systematic Literature Review of Gaps and Challenges in Value Assessment of Biosimilars

Published Aug 2023


Moorkens E, Lacosta TB, Dawoud D, et al.  A systematic literature review of gaps and challenges in value assessment of biosimilars: an ISPOR Special Interest Group Report. Value Health. 2023; 26(8)1137 – 1144.


This study aims to provide an overview of the gaps and challenges in the value assessment of biosimilars and to identify potential approaches to address them. 

A multidisciplinary, international team of biosimilar experts identified gaps and challenges. A systematic review was conducted of the peer-reviewed literature in PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science Core Collection, EBSCOhost Business Source Complete; and of the gray literature. Preliminary results were presented at ISPOR conferences, and this article benefited from 2 review rounds of peer review among ISPOR Biosimilar Special Interest Group members. 

Given that a biosimilar is highly similar to its reference biologic, health technology assessment agencies should accept the comparability exercise approved by regulatory authorities and, thus, conduct a price comparison when biosimilar reimbursement is requested for the same indication as the reference biologic. If the reference biologic is not reimbursed or is not the standard of care, a full economic evaluation of the biosimilar versus a relevant comparator needs to be conducted.
To date, little consideration has been given to specific challenges, such as how biosimilar value assessment can account for the placebo effect, potential differences between biologic-naive and biologic-experienced patients, the availability of intravenous and subcutaneous administration forms or different administration devices for the same active compound, value-added services, and the contribution of biosimilars for generating health gain at the population level.

There is a need to gather further insights in the methodology of value assessment for biosimilars, and health technology assessment agencies need to develop more elaborate guidance on biosimilar value assessment in specific circumstances.

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