Multiple Alzheimer’s Treatments Are in the Drug Pipeline, but Barriers to Access Will Remain, AIS Newsletter Reports

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More than a decade after the last Alzheimer’s drug launched, multiple treatments could hit the market within the next five years but it may be hard to provide patients access to them, Atlantic Information Services’ Drug Benefit News reports.

Alzheimer’s disease is ranked as one of the leading causes of death in the United States, and with a huge older population, incidence of the disease is expected to rise. There are now, however, multiple drugs in late-stage clinical trials that could hit the market within the next few years, according to a recent webinar covered in the April 22 issue of Atlantic Information Services, Inc.’s (AIS) Drug Benefit News.

2018 could see six new entrants to the Alzheimer’s treatment class, according to Drew Holzapfel, director of ResearchAgainstAlzheimer’s (RA2) and presenter at the April 11 webinar sponsored by nonprofit organization UsAgainstAlzheimer’s (UsA2). An additional five drugs are slated for a 2019 launch, four for 2020 and two for 2021. In addition, notes the report, about 50 drugs are in phase II trials, with about 12 in phase II/III trials.

But even with all these drugs in late-stage trials, barriers will remain to getting Alzheimer’s patients access to them, maintained Holzapfel. Diagnosis of Alzheimer’s remains an issue: physicians feel limited by the number of drugs currently on the market, and primary care providers don’t have time or access to the cognitive tests required. Additionally, there aren’t enough doctors in the geriatrics field, noted David Morgan, Ph.D., CEO of the Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute and a founding member of RA2. Reimbursement will also be an issue, as “Medicare payer levels are very difficult to survive on,” Morgan said.

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About Drug Benefit News
Published biweekly, Drug Benefit News delivers timely news and in-depth accounts of cost management strategies being employed by purchasers. Coverage includes news of the continually evolving PBM landscape, soaring specialty pharmacy costs, the emerging biosimilars market, generic inflation, exclusionary formularies, new adherence strategies, pharmacy network innovation, changing reimbursement methodology and more. Visit for more information.

About AIS
Atlantic Information Services, Inc. (AIS) is a publishing and information company that has been serving the health care industry for nearly 30 years. It develops highly targeted news, data and strategic information for managers in hospitals and health systems, health insurance companies, medical group practices, purchasers of health insurance, pharmaceutical companies and other health care organizations. AIS products include print and electronic newsletters, databases, websites, looseleafs, strategic reports, directories, webinars and virtual conferences. Learn more at

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Jill Brown, Executive Editor
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Atlantic Information Services, Inc.

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