1 Introduction

1 Introduction

This resource has been developed to provide practical information and advice on the use of biosimilar versions of infliximab (Inflectra and Remsima).

It is intended for use by both clinical and non-clinical staff considering the introduction of these biosimilar medicines into the NHS. The NHS England publication, What is a biosimilar medicine? states that the continuing development of biological medicines, including biosimilar medicines, creates increased choice for patients and clinicians, increased commercial competition and enhanced value propositions for individual medicines.

NICE's Adoption and Impact Programme worked with NHS organisations to share their learning and experiences of introducing biosimilar medicines. The information presented in this resource is intended for the sole purpose of supporting the NHS in decisions that are made around the introduction of biosimilars. It summarises the issues that are considered to be of significance to the NHS, but is not NICE guidance.

There are a number of considerations when introducing biosimilar versions of infliximab, some of which may be common to the introduction of other biosimilar medicines. The NHS staff involved in the production of this resource reported that the use of biosimilars can reduce costs, allowing more treatment with new medicines as long as the appropriate follow-up and monitoring systems are in place to manage risk and patient needs and expectations.

The learning gained from NHS organisations that have introduced biosimilars is presented as a series of examples of current practice. They are not presented as best practice but as real-life examples of how NHS sites have planned and managed the introduction of biosimilars.

This page was last updated: 31 July 2015