Biogen Offers Free Alzheimer’s Drug as Medicare Coverage Remains Uncertain

August 31, 2021

Biogen is offering its Alzheimer’s drug, Aduhelm (aducanumab), free to certain patients as uncertainty remains about how Medicare will reimburse the drug, which costs $56,000 a year.

The drugmaker is reportedly providing Aduhelm to a neurology center in Florida free of charge. Supplying free drugs to patient assistance programs is often used as part of a promotional strategy.

Several BlueCross and BlueShield insurance affiliates have already refused to cover the drug, while other insurers are waiting for a review of coverage by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services before reaching their decision.

The FDA approved Aduhelm in early June, despite the drug showing only moderate benefit in one phase 3 trial and no benefit in another late-stage study.

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