On April 2nd, ASBM met with Illinois legislators in Springfield to urge them to support a biosimilar substitution bill for Illinois.

ASBM Chairman Richard Dolinar, MD gave an educational presentation to legislators entitled “Biologics and Biosimilars: Building Informed Policy at State Level” as part of the Discovering Cures Forum. The event served as a briefing for state legislators to educate them on biosimilars and will include representatives from Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and Arthritis Foundation – Heartland Region.

Dr. Dolinar’s presentation emphasized the unique nature of biologics including their differences from chemical drugs, and offered physician perspectives on biosimilar substitution. Citing ASBM’s 2012 survey of 376 physicians who prescribe biologics, Dolinar noted that 88% of physicians felt it “very important or critical” to be notified of any biologic substitution.

Discovering Cures Illinois believes that sound policy in Illinois outlining parameters for safe substitution of interchangeable biologics is the best option to ensure patients have access to high-quality, safe and effective biologic medicines. Discovering Cures core concerns are to ensure transparency and the primacy of the physician-patient relationship, recognizing that treating physicians and their patients are in the best position to determine appropriate therapies.