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Making Biological Drug Alternatives More Widely Available

The passage of legislation A2477, will allow greater patient access to more affordable FDA-approved biologic medicines, according to BioNJ, The Gateway to Health. Biological medicines are vital to the treatment of conditions such as cancer, diabetes, infectious diseases and a variety of immune disorders. BioNJ’s rallying cry is “Because Patients Can’t Wait,” and the passage of A2477, “[it] moves us one step closer to ensuring that Patients have access to medications and cures while guaranteeing transparency in the prescription process and protecting Patient safety as well as preserving the doctor-patient relationship.”

“The passing of A2477 is an exemplary example of the New Jersey life sciences community coming together to ensure that innovative medical research is fostered, while interchangeable biological medicines are safely and more readily available to Patients in need of life-altering treatment,” said BioNJ’s President and CEO, Debbie Hart.

With the passage of A2477, pharmacists are allowed to substitute biosimilar products provided the conditions set forth in the bill are met. Biological medicines are manufactured through biotechnology using living organisms and are much more complex than traditional, chemically-synthesized drugs. Because of their unique nature and the unique process required to develop them, it is impossible to produce an exact copy of an innovator biotech medication. Therefore, the safest approach is to require pharmacies to communicate the biological product dispensed to the attention of the prescriber.

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