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  • At: PPR SIG 2021 (2021)
  • Type: Digital
  • By: LINDEN, Kari (University Pharmacy, Helsinki, Finland)
  • Co-author(s): Linden K(1), Pohjanoksa-Mäntylä M(2), Reponen S(2), Manner M(1), Puumalainen I(1) and Vuorikallas K(1) (1) University Pharmacy, Helsinki, Finland, (2) Clinical Pharmacy Group, Division of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Helsinki, Finland
  • Abstract:


    Relatively little is known about patients’ knowledge and perceptions of different kind of biological medicines. The perceptions may contribute to the treatment adherence, outcomes and costs.


    To study rheumatic, IBD and psoriasis in a skin patients’ knowledge and perceptions of biological medicines and related differences between the patients using original biological, biosimilar or traditional (non-biological) medicines.


    University Pharmacy’s customers claiming a rheumatic, IBD or osteoporotic condition diagnonized by a physician were invited to an anonymous questionnaire study in January 2021. Five-point Likert scale claims, Chi-square and Kruskall-Wallis tests (post-hoc with Bonferroni correction) and a limit of statistical significance of p<0.05 were employed (IBM SPSS 27).


    Of the respondents (N=1338; 73% rheumatic, 24% IBD and 3% psoriasis in a skin condition), 297 had used any biological medicine and 71 of them a biosimilar. 83% of all the patients, would trust in their physician’s decision to start the treatment with a biosimilar option. The term of a “biological medicine” was recognized by approximately 88-98% and “biosimilar” by 31-73% of the patients, most frequently by the users of biological medicines. According to all seven claims concerning the efficacy, safety, quality and usability of biosimilars compared the original biological medicines, the original medicine users had more favorable perceptions towards the original ones. Further, the users of original adalimumab and etanercept medicines also less frequently preferred a suggestion of substitution to a biosimilar (in four claims out of seven).


    In comparison with the international literature, Finnish IBD, rheumatic, psoriasis in a skin patients seem to have positive general perceptions of biosimilars. However, the users of original biologicals had more often a less favorable attitude towards biosimilars. The concept of a biological medicine was more often recognized than one of a biosimilar. Patient counselling on biosimilars may enhance their optimal use.

Last update 4 October 2019

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