Roche Pharma India expands partnership with Cipla for key oncology medicines

Drug firm Roche Pharma India on Thursday said it has expanded its partnership with domestic pharma major Cipla to further improve access to its key oncology medicines in India. Roche Pharma India has signed a "distribution agreement with Cipla to expand the scope of the partnership to include, marketing and distribution of its trademark oncology drugs - trastuzumab (Herclon), bevacizumab (Avastin) and rituximab (Ristova) in India," the company said in a statement.

The two companies had previously entered into a similar agreement in February 2018 for promotion and distribution of tocilizumab (Actemra) and other products, it added. "We have been working as a partner with Cipla for some of our products... We hope to extend the same support to patients in India through this new agreement,” Roche Products (India) general manager V Simpson Emmanuel said. This deal will ensure that the company's focus on providing Roche innovations in India remains steadfast in this portfolio and it will keep on collaborating with the relevant stakeholders in Indian healthcare system to ensure better outcomes for patients, he added.

In similar vein, Cipla India Business Executive vice-president and CEO Nikhil Chopra said: "This (pact) represents Cipla's unwavering commitment to address the unmet needs of cancer patients through an enhanced portfolio of offerings in this space, he added. In another development, Roche Pharma India said that it has partnered with Entero Healthcare Solutions to improve access to nephrology medicines in India. Under this agreement, Entero will be responsible for promotion, marketing and distribution of Roche Pharma's key nephrology drugs such as mycophenolate mofetil (Cellcept), valganciclovir (Valcyte), epoetin beta (NeoRecormon), and methoxy polyethylene glycol-epoetin beta (Mircera) in India, Roche Pharma India said.

"While Roche keep working towards creating and enhancing the healthcare ecosystem in India, we need to differentiate between our existing products that can reach the patients at a faster pace through a valued partnership like this, and the newer innovative drugs that we can focus on bringing into India in next few years," Emmanuel said. He pointed out that Roche Pharma India is focusing on strategic approaches to ensure robust access, better healthcare financing and overall enhanced healthcare ecosystem.

Entero Healthcare Solutions co-founder and CEO Prabhat Agrawal said: "We are delighted to enter this unique collaboration with Roche to be able to serve patient needs in the area of organ transplant and chronic kidney disease”..


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