Cigna Doubles Down on Incentives to Spur Biosimilar Adoption

Cigna Corp. — which made headlines earlier this year when it indicated patients could receive a monetary award if they switch from a high-priced psoriasis drug to a cheaper biologic — now appears to be making that strategy an official program, starting with a different drug.

In a recent press release, the insurer revealed that starting in July, two approved biosimilars for Janssen’s immunosuppressive drug Remicade (infliximab) — Avsola and Inflectra — will move to preferred status on its formularies. “With these updates, Cigna is taking concrete steps to help patients and plans realize the promise of alternative, clinically effective treatment options,” the company said.

More specifically, Cigna “will offer all eligible customers the option to receive a one-time $500 debit card for health care services and products if they decide to switch to a biosimilar or another preferred medication.”

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Leslie Small

Leslie Small

Leslie has been working in journalism since 2009 and reporting on the health care industry since 2014. She has covered the many ups and downs of the Affordable Care Act exchanges, the failed health insurer mega-mergers, and hundreds of other storylines spanning subjects such as Medicaid managed care, Medicare Advantage, employer-sponsored insurance, and prescription drug coverage. As the managing editor of Health Plan Weekly and Radar on Drug Benefits, she writes and edits for both publications while overseeing a small team of reporters who also focus on the managed care sector. Before joining AIS Health, she was a senior editor for the e-newsletter Fierce Health Payer, and she started her career as a copy editor at multiple local newspapers. She graduated with a dual degree in journalism and political science from Penn State University.

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