JointHealth™ express   February 3, 2017

Call for patient input on baricitinib for rheumatoid arthritis

Do you have rheumatoid arthritis or care for someone who does? We need your valuable input.

The Common Drug Review (CDR) is currently welcoming patients and their caregivers to provide input to patient organizations on the manufacturer’s submission for baricitinib for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Baricitinib is an oral disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) that is being considered for reimbursement.

Baricitinib belongs to the class of inflammatory arthritis medications known as “targeted small molecule medications” (TSMM). It interferes with the process in rheumatoid arthritis that leads to joint damage by targeting JAK1 and JAK3 of the Janus family of kinases (enzymes).

The CDR is part of the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH). The CDR conducts objective, rigorous reviews of the clinical and cost effectiveness of drugs, and provides formulary listing recommendations to the publicly funded drug plans in Canada (except Quebec).

To help them make their recommendations, the CDR accepts input from patient organizations and groups, like Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE). Because patient input is vitally important to government decision-making about public reimbursement of medications, we would like to gather your views and share them with the CDR.

These are the questions they are asking:
  1. What are the rheumatoid arthritis related symptoms and problems that impact the patients' day-to-day life and quality of life? For example, what aspects of rheumatoid arthritis are more important to control, how does the disease affect day-to-day life, and are there any activities that the patient is not able to do as a result of rheumatoid arthritis?
  2. How well are patients managing their rheumatoid arthritis with currently available treatments? Examples of the types of information to be included in the answer are:
    • Are patients using or have they ever used baricitinib for the treatment of their disease?
    • What therapy are patients using for rheumatoid arthritis?
    • How effective are current treatments in controlling the common aspects of rheumatoid arthritis?
    • Are there needs, experienced by some or many patients, which are not being met by the current treatments? What are these needs?
    • Do current treatments have adverse effects that are more difficult to tolerate than others? What are they?
    • Do patients have difficulty accessing current treatments because of costs, such as costs related to travel and drug administration costs?
    • When offered, how do the patient assistance or support programs impact on the accessibility and effectiveness of the treatment?
  3. How does the disease affect caregivers?
    • What challenges do family and friends who support a patient to manage the disease face?
    • What impact does the treatment have on the caregiver’s daily life, such as emotional/psychological effects, fatigue, stress, and physical challenges?
  4. What are patients’ expectations for barcitinib?
    • What are the perceived advantages or disadvantages of baricitinib?
    • What are the aspects of the patients’ disease that it is hoped will be addressed?
If you live with rheumatoid arthritis or care for someone with the disease, please send us your input by Friday, March 17, so that we may make a submission by the March 21 deadline. Your input will be anonymous.

Please contact us at to provide your input or arrange for a phone interview at 604-974-1366.