Novartis Pharma S.A.E. (Novartis Egypt) held a press conference to announce the introduction of the first fixed dose combination triple therapy in one device for asthma in Egypt, with the goal of offering patients better control of their condition and improving their quality of life. Renowned respiratory and pulmonology experts were invited to discuss the patient journey in Egypt, advances in therapies for uncontrolled asthma and the benefits of modern inhalers in promoting greater treatment adherence.
“Asthma is the most prevalent chronic respiratory disease in the world, with a substantial health and economic impact on patients. Around 358 million people worldwide suffered from asthma in 2015, causing 400,000 deaths1.,” Dr. Mohamed Awad Tageldin, Professor of Pulmonology at Ain Shams University, said.
“Fewer patients self-rate their asthma as uncontrolled compared to those who are truly uncontrolled. Half of asthma patients are poorly adherent to therapeutic advice which may lead to asthma exacerbations and hospitalizations. A study conducted in 2020 evaluated asthmatic patients’ adherence to inhaler therapy and sought to examine drug-related factors affecting it among Egyptian asthma patients. The study showed that out of 110 patients, 42.2% demonstrated a high level, 22.9% a medium level, and 34.9% a low level of medication adherence.” (22,23,24,25)Dr. Tarek Safwat, Professor of Pulmonology at Ain Shams University said.
“Risk factors for asthma have been determined to be age, gender, country as well as specific comorbidities such as respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, nervous, and neurological diseases. More than 1/3 of patients remain uncontrolled when treated with current inhalers. A considerable percentage of patients (28-68%) do not use the inhalers correctly, reducing medication benefits,”(22,24,25) Dr. Hossam Hosny, Professor of Pulmonology at Cairo University said.
Achieving higher rates of adherence requires research to determine the current weak points and counteract them to support patients. The PLATINUM program was designed with that purpose in mind. The program enrolled over 7,500 patients worldwide. The 4 studies in Platinum program showed that the main concern is the poor adherence to inhaler therapy in patients with bronchial asthma is the fact that it increases mortality, morbidity, and the number of hospital visits and leads to higher healthcare costs for patients. It is essential to try and increase medication adherence so that patients can obtain the greatest benefits possible from this form of therapy,15,26,27,28,29” Dr. Essam Gouda, Professor of Pulmonology at Alexandria University, said.
“The first fixed dose combination triple therapy in one device in Egypt is very positive news for patients. These new products have demonstrated their capacity to provide better quality of life and reduce exacerbations compared to the standard of care significantly, with 19% improvement for dual therapy and 43% for triple therapy introduction of new inhalers with new molecules in Egyptian Market in both dual and triple therapy inhalers: Mometasone fuorate has demonstrated the highest binding affinity with superior control, 26,27,28,29” Dr. Adel Khatab, Professor of Pulmonology at Ain Shams University said.
Patient compliance on one device will serve both patients and environment as patients would not require extra reliever treatments in pMDI, which subsequently decreases emissions and carbon footprint, 26,27,28,29” Dr Khatab added.
“The treatments currently available to asthma patients have been able to help them cope with their condition, but many experience exacerbations of their disease and symptoms, which significantly impacts their quality of life. At Novartis, our goal is to reimagine asthma care in a way that helps patients better control their disease. Over the last 60 years, there have been two major breakthroughs in asthma care at Novartis, the first was inhalers in the 1960s and more recently the development of biologics. The introduction of fixed dose combination triple therapy in one device for asthma in Egypt is a testament to our commitment to local patients and to ensuring that they have access to the latest breakthroughs in treatment,” Dr. Gehan Ramadan, Novartis Egypt Chief Scientific Officer, said.
“At Novartis, we seek to develop solutions for both widespread and rare diseases. Respiratory diseases, and asthma in particular, with their high prevalence rates, have been a top priority for Novartis for many years. We take our role as a leading respiratory company very seriously, and our focus is on driving novel advances to improve the lives of those living with lung conditions all around the world. By prioritizing innovation and establishing close partnerships with patients and medical experts, Novartis hopes to solve the unmet needs in asthma management, improving treatment outcomes for asthma and other respiratory diseases and relieving the burden such conditions place on the healthcare sector and society as a whole,” Ahmed Magdy Taher, Head of Immunology, Dermatology and Respiratory Franchise at Novartis Egypt said.