An alternative to latanoprostene bunod would be to prescribe one of the already approved prostaglandin analogs, which should achieve similar intraocular pressure reductions. But there is no drug similar to netarsudil ophthalmic solution, a rho kinase inhibitor that has a novel mechanism of action and has been placed in a new class of drugs.
This distinction is important, since patients may more readily pay out of pocket for a drug that has no alternatives, especially if it seems to have an advantage, such as the use of netarsudil ophthalmic solution as a once-daily adjunct to a prostaglandin, Dr. Teymoorian said.
Even if patients are willing to pay for a drug that is not covered by Medicare Part D, it may take some negotiating with local pharmacies to ensure that they can fill the prescription.
Not all pharmacies are willing to stock these drugs because of lower demand, Dr. Teymoorian said, and physicians may need to identify those that carry or will order them and encourage patients to visit these locations.
"Aerie Pharmaceuticals is committed to working with the physician and payer communities to ensure that our products are available to the patients who need them," said Tom Mitro, president and chief operating officer, Aerie Pharmaceuticals, in a prepared statement: "We have been proactive in meeting with Medicare Part D plans about [netarsudil ophthalmic solution 0.02%] and expect to achieve favorable formulary coverage by January 2019.
"In the interim, physicians are able to gain access to [netarsudil ophthalmic solution 0.02%] for their patients in Medicare Part D by submitting a prior authorization to the particular payers insuring the patients," he said. "Aerie has partnered with one of the leading reimbursement support services to facilitate this prior authorization process for patients, physicians, and Part D plans."
Savak "Sev" Teymoorian, MD, MBA
E: [email protected]
Dr. Teymoorian is a speaker and consultant for Aerie Pharmaceuticals and Bausch + Lomb and conducts research for both companies.
Miranda Gill, MSN, RN, NEA-BC
E: [email protected]
Gill did not report any disclosures.