Biogen flags delays on Spinraza treatments as hospitals shift focus and resources to pandemic patients
The pandemic is starting to interrupt the flow of Biogen’s lifesaving blockbuster Spinraza to SMA patients.
The big biotech noted in a statement that some health systems are postponing treatment as they set about the complex business of shifting resources to fight the pandemic. In the statement, Biogen noted:
We are aware that some patients treated with SPINRAZA are temporarily having their dosing postponed as part of health system efforts to prioritize potential COVID-19 patients. We are working with health systems and institutions to help navigate these unprecedented times while also providing access to a critical therapy for people with SMA. We also wanted to point you to guidance shared yesterday from Cure SMA related to COVID-19 that addresses this issue.
The interruption in dosing raises a thorny issue for some biopharmas. If hospitals are overwhelmed by a growing number of coronavirus infections, how will that affect drugs that rely on health systems to dispense complex therapeutics? The drug — considered a major breakthrough in treating SMA in infants — is started with 4 doses over 58 days, followed by a new dose every 4 months. It’s designed to be given as an intrathecal injection into the cerebrospinal fluid.
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