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CVS Pushes Into Making Cheaper Versions of Complex Drugs with New Discount Humira


CVS Health has entered into a partnership with Sandoz, a subsidiary of Novartis, to produce a biosimilar version of the popular arthritis treatment drug Humira. This new biosimilar, named Cordavis Hyromiz, is anticipated to be sold for over 80% less than the current list price of the brand-name Humira drug. This move is part of CVS Health’s strategy to expand its involvement in the biosimilars market, a sector projected to grow to $100 billion within the next six years.

To facilitate this endeavor, CVS Health is launching a subsidiary named Cordavis, which will specialize in securing the supply of biosimilar drugs. The company is partnering with Sandoz, a prominent generic manufacturing unit under Novartis. The new biosimilar, Hyromiz, is expected to be launched in the first quarter of 2024.

The biosimilar market is gaining traction as an alternative to costly brand-name drugs, particularly in complex therapies involving biologics. With the rising demand for more affordable treatment options, companies like CVS Health are looking to establish their presence and secure supply chains within this market. The partnership with Sandoz will enable CVS to offer a competitive biosimilar version of Humira, a drug produced by AbbVie.

This strategic move also reflects CVS Health’s efforts to ensure a stable and ample supply of these biosimilar drugs in the U.S. marketplace, thus minimizing potential supply disruptions. This commitment to volume is aimed at addressing one of the key challenges often associated with biosimilars.

Despite CVS’s recent setback of losing Blue Shield of California as a pharmacy benefits manager to new entrants like Mark Cuban’s Cost Plus Drug Company and Amazon Pharmacy, analysts suggest that the potential impact from such newcomers might be limited, especially in the biosimilars segment. Many established players in the pharmaceutical industry, like CVS, have strong relationships with manufacturers and the ability to negotiate rebates or discounts, providing them with an advantage in offering more cost-effective options to consumers.

As the biosimilar market continues to evolve, competition and efforts to reduce drug costs are likely to shape the landscape of the pharmaceutical industry, providing patients with more affordable treatment choices.

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