ISR Autumn Meeting 2019

2nd Place Regular Poster

Tahir Aziz


Patient Satisfaction with Biosimilar Therapy Initiation and Switching.


Tahir Aziz, Rachel Kenny, Stephanie Naramore, Patricia O Neill, Dalal Alkudir, Diana Gheta, Ronan Mullan, David Kane


Tallaght University Hospital Rheumatology Department


From June 1 to July 19 2019, 106 patients attending TUH rheumatology department who were prescribed etanercept or adalimumab were initiated on best value biosimilar or switched to best value biosimilar from bio-originator. We performed a call back from our Rheumatology helpline to follow up these patients and their initial experience of initiation or switching to biosimilar therapy.


To follow up the patients and their initial experience of initiation or switching to biosimilar therapy.


A standard introduction explaining the reason for call back and a standardised set of questions were used with each patient (appendix 1). If patients declined to provide information they were thanked for taking the call. We set an initial target of the first 50 telephone respondents as a representative sample.


46 patients were contacted by phone. No patient declined to participate. Indications for biologic therapy were Rheumatoid Arthritis = 23, Psoriatic arthritis =10, AS = 7, Other = 8. The following therapies were prescribed;- Benepali = 29, Imraldi 13, Hulio = 0, Amgevita = 4. 28 (61%) of 46 patients had commenced biosimilar therapy. Of the 18 who had not yet commenced therapy, 10 still had supply of bio-originator, 1 was awaiting results of screening tests, 3 had not had time to get their prescription and 4 listed other reasons. When asked if it the biosimilar therapy was available on presentation of prescription 2 reported same day dispensing and 16 received it the next day while 10 received it more than one day later. The average number of weeks of self-administration of biosimilar was 2 weeks at the time of telephone contact (range 0-6). 24/28 (86%) were satisfied with the injection device/process, 4 reported dissatisfaction with the injection device/process. 24/28 (86%) were satisfied with switching, 3 were dissatisfied and 1 did not respond.


86% of patients initiated or switched to biosimilar therapy reported initial satisfaction with the therapy, the delivery device and the switching / initiation process. We are going to monitor longer term satisfaction and examine the areas of dissatisfaction identified to improve our initiation/switching process.