Ensuring familiarity with the area
Pharmacy teams and individuals planning on using ranibizumab biosimlar should prepare themselves carefully. Make sure you are aware of, and where necessary read and understand, the following.
National commissioning policy
Ensure you are familiar with:
Ensure you are familiar with:
SPS resources on biosimilar background
SPS has produced materials to help understand the background to biological and biosimilar medicines in general as well as the evidence for ranibizumab biosimilar specifically.
SPS resources on pipeline medicines
Be aware too of information on pipeline ranibizumab biosimilars. Detail is available from:
- Our annual new medicines summary
- Our dedicated page on ranibizumab which includes subsequent updates.
Developing an implementation plan
Developing an implementation plan will require working collaboratively across integrated care systems. This will include work within pharmacy as well as with prescribing clinicians, particularly ophthalmologists; specialist nurses; business managers; finance and contracting teams; and the pharmaceutical industry.
Identify patients receiving anti-VEGF treatments
This work will need to be undertaken with clinicians. You should have an understanding of the number of patients in your organisation receiving anti-VEGF treatments currently.
Identify patients eligible for ranibizumab biosimilar
Continue working with clinicians to identify the opportunity for biosimilar introduction. Identify those patients suitable for ranibizumab biosimilar as well as those for whom it would be clinically inappropriate to use the biosimilar. Refer to the National Commissioning recommendations for medical retinal vacular medicines (publication pending till July 2022).
Ensure use in local pathway of care
To ensure ranibizumab biosimilar can be used within a local care pathway, you should consider a number of factors across the integrated care system; these include:
- Ensure everyone is comfortable with the Understanding biological and biosimilar medicines and the clinical evidence and licensing process for ranibizumab. Give opportunity to identify, discuss and address and clinician concerns with both the evidence and its implementation.
- Extra capacity may be required to support additional work associated with the introduction so that existing services are not adversely affected.
- Consider the potential effects for:
- The number of clinic visits, injections, and the ability to deliver services safely.
- The operational impact for clinicians and specialist nurses on other related clinical services.
- Pharmacy capacity to dispense and store the drug.
- Pharmacy capacity to support, implement and monitor the introduction.
- Establish processes with clinicians and patients to ensure shared decision making is possible supported by written materials, information sessions, education and patient alert cards.
- Ensuring staff responsible for implementation prepare themselves using any necessary materials, including information sessions and education.
- Ensure a workable process for actions to take when reviewing, switching and discontinuing anti-VEGF treatments in line with the national commissioning recommendations for medical retinal vascular medicines.
- Ensure savings can be used effectively to offset costs, incentivise change and improve patient care.
- National Commissioning Policy link added