Pfizer has disclosed that the list price for a five-day course of its Covid antiviral drug Paxlovid will be $1,390 when it transitions to the commercial market later this year. The announcement comes as Pfizer prepares to sell Paxlovid directly to health insurers in 2024, moving away from the government’s distribution, which has been free to the public since December 2021. The list price is more than double the $529 the federal government paid for the treatment.
While concerns have been raised about the potential impact of the higher price on access to life-saving treatment, Pfizer emphasized that health insurance plans are expected to pay considerably less than the list price. Patients are likely to have minimal or no out-of-pocket costs, and Pfizer is actively collaborating with payers to reduce copays for patients. The company has committed to subsidizing copays for commercially insured individuals at least through 2028.
Paxlovid has been shown to reduce the risk of severe disease and death from Covid, particularly among vulnerable patients with conditions such as diabetes, heart conditions, or compromised immune systems. Pfizer aims to ensure broad and equitable access to its medicines and is working with payers to secure favorable formulary placement for Paxlovid, contributing to lower out-of-pocket costs for patients.
In related financial updates, Pfizer anticipates a $7 billion reduction in revenue from Paxlovid, citing the return of doses labeled for emergency use by the federal government. Consequently, the company has adjusted its 2023 sales expectations to be between $58 billion and $61 billion, down from the previous guidance of $67 billion to $70 billion, attributing the revision solely to its Covid products.