The next day of national medical insurance negotiations: Representatives from Hengrui and Fosun appeared, but AstraZeneca only discussed one drug
On November 18, the 2023 national medical insurance negotiations entered the second day, and representatives of well-known pharmaceutical companies such as AstraZeneca, Hengrui Pharmaceuticals (600276), Fosun Pharmaceuticals (600196), and Kelun Pharmaceuticals (002422) appeared. AstraZeneca Vice President Huang Bin, who has led many teams in medical insurance negotiations, appeared again. He told The Paper that only one drug was discussed.
At about 8:55 a.m., The Paper reporter heard at the scene that staff invited Chengdu Shengdi Pharmaceutical, Beijing Ruiye, Hunan Kelun, Beijing Shuanghe and other companies to be the first to enter the site for negotiations. Half an hour later, one after another companies completed negotiations and walked out of the conference room. Subsequently, representatives from many well-known pharmaceutical companies such as Hengrui Pharmaceuticals, Fosun Pharma, Zai Lab (9688.HK), Huadong Pharmaceutical (00963), and Chia Tai Pharmaceutical entered the negotiation venue one after another.
When entering and exiting the negotiation site, most business representatives remained silent and were unwilling to disclose the status of the negotiations. A representative of a pharmaceutical company in Xinjiang told The Paper reporter when entering the venue that he was not nervous. “We are already here whether we are prepared or not. There is nothing we can do.” This company was also the last company to come out of the negotiation site in the morning. Regarding the negotiation situation, the representative of the pharmaceutical company simply said that it was okay, not bad.
The most eye-catching aspect of the morning negotiations was the appearance of Huang Bin, Vice President of AstraZeneca China. Huang Bin has participated in medical insurance negotiations on behalf of AstraZeneca many times. During the 2020 medical insurance negotiations, Huang Bin’s phrase “Look at my expression” was widely circulated in the medical circle. In 2021, Huang Bin told reporters from The Paper when he walked out of the medical insurance negotiation: “You can’t say it, you have to be disciplined.”
At the medical insurance negotiation site, Huang Bin entered the negotiation area after 11 a.m. The Paper reporter noticed that during the break in negotiations, Huang Bin came out of the negotiation room and stood in the corridor to make a phone call for about two or three minutes, while there were cameras filming nearby. At around 11:30, Huang Bin and his colleagues walked out of the negotiation area. When asked about the negotiation situation, Huang Bin smiled. He also mentioned to The Paper reporter that only one drug was discussed, and “I can’t talk about the specific situation. I will know it in two days.”
It is worth mentioning that many corporate representatives participating in medical insurance negotiations chose some special outfits in order to seek good luck. Huang Bin even wore a red scarf this time.
AstraZeneca has a number of products that have entered this medical insurance negotiation, and three products have attracted much attention from the industry. One is the blockbuster ADC anti-tumor drug Trastuzumab, which was developed and commercialized by AstraZeneca and the Japanese pharmaceutical company Daiichi Sankyo. Global sales in 2022 will reach US$1.238 billion, making it a popular drug. A star item on the ADC circuit. This is the first time that Trastuzumab has entered into medical insurance negotiations. The other two are AstraZeneca’s rare disease drugs selumetinib bisulfate capsules and eculizumab injection. Rare diseases require large investment in research and development, and product prices are often very high. Referring to the medical insurance negotiations in previous years, many rare disease drugs have experienced significant declines, which also contributed to the famous “soul bargaining” scene that year.
In addition to AstraZeneca, representatives from Genting Sunyao (1952.HK) entered the venue at around 10:40 a.m. As an emerging biotechnology company, Genting Xinyao only ushered in its first commercial product, Elacycline (trade name: Yijia), in March this year. The drug is currently in the process of adjusting its preliminary review list in the previous medical insurance catalog.
Elacycline is an antibiotic approved for the treatment of complicated intra-abdominal infections in adults. After being approved in March, Yijia issued its first prescription at Huashan Hospital in Shanghai in July this year. Industry news has previously mentioned that the price of a bottle of the drug is around 1,800 yuan. Antibiotic products rely on hospital channels, and since this is the company’s only approved vaccine, whether it can successfully enter the medical insurance catalog through medical insurance negotiations is of great significance to Yunding Xinyao.