Decision Resources, Inc., one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and health care issues, finds that Amgen/Wyeth's Enbrel leads the market for biologic therapies to treat rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis. Rheumatologists and dermatologists both prefer Enbrel over all other biologic agents because the drug has been marketed for a sufficient period of time to provide assurance of the durability of its efficacy and safety.

"Prescriptions for Enbrel will increase modestly as a result of continued uptake and the impact of Medicare reform," said Cynthia Mundy, Ph.D., analyst at Decision Resources, Inc. "Among rheumatologists, Enbrel already enjoys widespread use. Rheumatologists also expect to move some of their patients currently treated with Centocor's Remicade to Enbrel when Medicare reform takes effect in 2006 and changes the reimbursement landscape for self- administered drugs. Enbrel is also the biologic agent most widely prescribed by dermatologists."

The new PhysicianForum report entitled Impact of Biologics for Rheumatoid Arthritis and Psoriasis also finds that pharmacy and medical directors will continue to use several measures to contain the cost of biologic therapy. Currently, prior authorization, step therapy protocols, and non-preferred formulary status limit access to biologic agents. Pharmacy and medical directors are likely to continue to use these measures and may implement more restrictions over the next five years.

Impact of Biologics for Rheumatoid Arthritis and Psoriasis is based on a U.S. survey of 20 HMO pharmacy or medical directors, 70 rheumatologists, and 70 dermatologists. Their responses were compared to assess similarities and differences of opinion regarding clinical, economic, and scientific factors.

About PhysicianForum

PhysicianForum is a primary research service from Decision Resources that offers access to high volume-prescribing PCPs, specialists, and managed care organization representatives in the United States; analysis of events and survey participants' responses to them; insight into prescribing patterns; and an examination of the implications of events and issues for the pharmaceutical market.

About Decision Resources

Decision Resources, Inc. (http://www.decisionresources.com/) is a world leader in market research publications, advisory services, and consulting designed to help clients shape strategy, allocate resources, and master their chosen markets.

All company, brand, or product names contained in this document may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

  For more information, contact:    Elizabeth Marshall    Decision Resources, Inc.    781-296-2563    emarshall@dresources.com 

SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

CONTACT: Elizabeth Marshall of Decision Resources, Inc., +1-781-296-2563,
emarshall@dresources.com

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