April 2, 2019
BREAKING: Civica Rx Will Launch Its First Generic Drug this Quarter
The not-for-profit generic pharmaceutical company created by hospitals that banded together to tackle drug pricing will launch its first product this quarter, according to Marc Harrison, CEO of Intermountain Healthcare, which is a founding member of Civica Rx.
“It will be a hospital-based drug,” Harrison said during a keynote presentation at the 10th annual Becker’s Hospital Review conference in Chicago. Though he didn’t name the compound, he elaborated: “It’s a drug that’s been around for a very long time, it’s necessary and it’s expensive.”
Civica Rx should produce the drug at about one-tenth of its current cost, according to Harrison.
The company, which launched in 2018, includes 120 hospitals and health systems across the country. Besides Intermountain, founding systems include Catholic Health Initiatives, HCA Healthcare, Mayo Clinic, Providence St. Joseph Health, SSM health and Trinity Health. These seven organizations alone represent roughly 500 hospitals in the United States. According to the company’s website, representatives from around a third of all hospitals in the nation have contacted Civica Rx and are interested in participating.
“We have a thousand U.S. hospitals on board,” Harrison said. “We’ve got interest from big payers. This is the real thing and big pharma better watch out.”
Civica Rx is one example of a larger trend among healthcare providers that several CEOs mentioned at Becker’s: That is, the nature of competition between hospitals is changing. When asked about whether or not he viewed other hospitals as competition, Providence St. Joseph Health CEO Rod Hochman said:
“See, I think that’s a misnomer. You don’t have to be a friend or an enemy. You can actually work with people you compete with. What I think we have to think more about is what’s best for the communities we’re in.”
That mentality will be crucial for health systems that undergo the amount of change needed to survive. “When I think about the one common thing about the three of us, it’s that we’re ready for that future,” said Jefferson Health CEO Stephen Klasko, regarding himself, Harrison and Hochman. “It’s going to be difficult and there are going to be bumps in the road, but we’re not pretending things aren’t going to change.”
Things are changing so drastically, in fact, that the old separations between players in the healthcare industry are collapsing. And by the end of this quarter, a group of hospitals, having entered the pharmaceutical business, will have released their first generic drug.