Premier and Pfizer partner on heart and cancer treatments

Feb. 21, 2020

Premier Inc.’s ProvideGx program has partnered with Pfizer Inc. to supply Corvert (ibutilide fumarate injection) and Vincristine Sulfate Injection, USP to healthcare providers, to help stabilize the long-term supply of two vital medications for its members.

Corvert is an anti-arrhythmic heart medication used to treat atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter. Vincristine is a chemotherapy drug, primarily used to treat childhood cancers such as acute leukemia, and, in combination with other oncolytic agents, Hodgkin's and non- Hodgkin's lymphoma, rhabdomyosarcoma, neuroblastoma and Wilms’ tumor.

“Supporting a sustainable supply of these important medicines is a top priority for Premier and our members,” said Premier’s President, Michael J. Alkire. “This agreement speaks to the core strengths of the ProvideGx program - our ability to provide both short- and long-term solutions to support our members and patients. Together with our members, we have the nimbleness to act quickly when market events require it, thereby improving access and raising the bar for the entire drug supply chain. Moreover, the goal of ProvideGx is to create market stability and give manufacturers assurances to make the necessary investments for a consistent, long-term supply.”

Premier’s ProvideGx program identifies safe, high-quality supply sources for drugs that are or may be at risk of being added to the national drug shortage list. Guided by health systems with more than 1,600 hospitals across the nation, the program has provided members access to more than 150 drugs that are or have been recently designated as shortage drugs, including metoprolol; cysteine hydrochloride; sodium bicarbonate; diphenhydramine; hydromorphone; lidocaine; morphine; thiamine; phytonadione injection; and emergency, pre-filled syringes of calcium chloride, epinephrine, sodium bicarbonate, atropine sulfate, dextrose and lidocaine. The program plans to introduce additional drugs from a target list of more than 50 products in months to come.

“Patients need continued access to these critical drugs and important treatments, “said Jerry Storm, Senior Vice President of Pharmacy Services at OSF HealthCare of Peoria, IL. “We commend Premier and Pfizer for reaching this deal to support long-term access to these medications now so that we can go back to the business of providing care to our patients that results in outstanding outcomes. Having a reliable supply of these drugs is critical for patients who can’t afford to wait, and crucial for their survival.”

ProvideGx is part of Premier’s ongoing effort to help facilitate the availability of high-quality products, including drugs for which there may be supply challenges. In doing so, Premier is working to insulate its members from supply fluctuations that may affect the market at large.

“Over the past several years, Pfizer has made significant advancements in addressing drug shortages, including investing $2 billion to modernize manufacturing and increase capacity,” said Suneet Varma, Global President, Pfizer Hospital. “This agreement with Premier continues to build on these efforts – which we hope will ultimately increase patient access to two vital medicines, Corvert and Vincristine – helping to drive market sustainably in the long term.”

The financial terms of Premier’s agreement with Pfizer were not disclosed.

Premier has the announcement.