Japan OKs Public Insurance Coverage for SMA Drug Zolgensma

Politics Lifestyle

Tokyo, May 13 (Jiji Press)--A panel that advises the health minister approved on Wednesday coverage for Novartis AG's spinal muscular atrophy drug Zolgensma under Japan's health insurance system.

Following the approval at a general meeting of the Central Insurance Medical Council, the drug will be priced at 167,077,222 yen, the highest level of any drug covered by public health insurance in Japan.

The insurance coverage is set to take effect from May 20.

The pricing of Zolgensma in Japan has drawn attention as the drug, developed by the major Swiss pharmaceutical company, is priced at over 200 million yen per dose in the United States.

SMA is an intractable disease caused mainly by abnormalities in genes that produce proteins. It leads to muscle weakness through a decrease in motor nerve cells.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press