Budget impact analysis of biosimilar infliximab (CT-P13) for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis in six Central and Eastern European countries

Eur J Health Econ. 2014 May;15 Suppl 1(Suppl 1):S65-71. doi: 10.1007/s10198-014-0595-3. Epub 2014 May 16.


The first biosimilar monoclonal antibody (infliximab, CT-P13) was registered by the European Medicines Agency in 2013 for the treatment of several inflammatory conditions including rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Biosimilar infliximab is first being marketed in the Central and Eastern European countries. This paper presents the estimated budget impact of the introduction of biosimilar infliximab in RA over a 3-year time period in six selected countries, namely Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. A prevalence-based model was constructed for budget impact analysis. Two scenarios were compared to the reference scenario (RSc) where no biosimilar infliximab is available: biosimilar scenario 1 (BSc1), where interchanging the originator infliximab with biosimilar infliximab is disallowed, and only patients who start new biological therapy are allowed to use biosimilar infliximab; as well as biosimilar scenario 2 (BSc2), where interchanging the originator infliximab with biosimilar infliximab is allowed, and 80% of patients treated with originator infliximab are interchanged to biosimilar infliximab. Compared to the RSc, the net savings are estimated to be €15.3 or €20.8 M in BSc1 and BSc2, respectively, over the 3 years. If budget savings were spent on reimbursement of additional biosimilar infliximab treatment, approximately 1,200 or 1,800 more patients could be treated in the six countries within 3 years in the two biosimilar scenarios, respectively. The actual saving is most sensitive to the assumption of the acquisition cost of the biosimilar drug and to the initial number of patients treated with biological therapy. The study focused on one indication (RA) and demonstrated that the introduction of biosimilar infliximab can lead to substantial budget savings in health care budgets. Further savings are expected for other indications where biosimilar medicines are implemented.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / economics*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use
  • Antirheumatic Agents / economics*
  • Antirheumatic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / economics
  • Budgets*
  • Cost Savings*
  • Costs and Cost Analysis / methods
  • Drug Costs / statistics & numerical data
  • Europe
  • Humans
  • Infliximab
  • Models, Economic


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antirheumatic Agents
  • Infliximab