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    Specialty Pharmacy Will Gain a Bigger Chunk of U.S. Pharmaceuticals

    The specialty explosion is only going to get bigger.

     

    “If I am an independent pharmacist, I am looking at what we are showing—5 to 6 years of growth in the specialty category—and I am starting to think about how do I make a dent in this market place?” Fri said. Independent pharmacies can work with partners in ways that can give them access to the specialty market, he explained. They can work with their wholesaler or through a buying group so they can fill orders for their patients one by one, “rather than have the products on their own shelf,” he said.

    Manufacturers of specialty medications are bringing more innovative products to the market, Fri noted. “They are also making choices about how their drugs have the best possible pathways to the patients. Some of the pathways are actually through retail pharmacies.”

    The findings were published in the foundation’s 2017 edition of Specialty Pharmaceutical Distribution: Facts, Figures and Trends, which is available for download here. The HDA Foundation is an organization of the Healthcare Distribution Alliance. The report defined specialty medications to include biological drugs (but excluded vaccines and insulin), and nonbiologicals that cost more than about $600 per month, require special handling or storage, or have complex treatment regimens. The findings are based on a survey of HDA member specialty distributors and on statistics from such sources as IQVIA.

    Valerie DeBenedette
    Valerie DeBenedette is Managing Editor of Drug Topics.

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