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New ARV Marketed and Would Enter China in Low Price

AIDS patients in China can use first-line ARVs!
As the global largest ARV manufacturer and multinational pharmaceutical company, GSK recently announced the formal marketing of a new ARV Tivicay (chemical name: dolutegravir). In combination with other ARVs, Tivicay can be used to treat HIV-infected adults and child patients aged ≥ 12 years. This new ARV has been approved by China Food and Drug Administration in January this year.
Tivicay has been approved in 100 countries and recommended as a preferred first-line ARV in combination regimens for new AIDS patients by most international ART guidelines. WHO has also included Tivicay in alternative first-line treatment regimens for new AIDS patients as the only integrase inhibitor in the updated 2015 ART guidelines.
According to data from WHO, there were 575,000 reported PLWHA in China by the end of October 2015, of which there were 177,000 deaths. Currently, PLWHA are estimated to constitute about 0.06% of the total population in China.
Although HIV/AIDS response has achieved great progress, the lack of effective ARVs and the high prices of existing ARVs are the biggest barrier for AIDS patients to access treatment. Some patients have to spend over RMB 10,000 on ARVs every month. Based on the estimate of RMB 3,000 per year for each patient, the annual market volume of ARVs is RMB 1.7 billion in China.
Globally, the prices of ARVs are on a sharp decrease. In 2015, UNAIDS reported that the number of new HIV infections dropped by 35% and the number of AIDS-related deaths dropped by 41% over the past 15 years. The leading contributing factor is the reduction of ARV prices by nearly 99% from about USD 10,000 per year for each patient to about USD 100 (approximately RMB 620) per year for each patient, benefiting 15 million people.
China is implementing the "Four Frees and One Care" policy in HIV/AIDS response, including free treatment for patients with economic hardship. ARVs used for free treatment are mainly procured with central and local special funds for HIV/AIDS response, provided by international cooperation programs and donated by other sources to government departments.
GSK will follow the global tendency and market Tivicay in a low price in China. "In the light of the recently announced State drug price negotiation piloting, we will also consider adopting the strategy of "price-based access", ensuring better access to Tivicay for AIDS patients," said GSK SVP Hervé Gisserot.
One month ago, China finalized the first order according to international practices for negotiation on imported drugs. Based on market and medical insurance commitments, the government is contributing to the reduction of prices of brand-name drugs and patent drugs. The price reduction of "life-saving drugs" is considered a good thing, but it takes time to put the supporting policies of medical insurance system into operation. (Source:,, July 6, 2016)