Gastroenterology & Hepatology

March 2023 - Volume 19, Issue 3

Patient Resource Spotlight

Biosimilars: What You Should Know Webpage


Professional Members of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation are gastroenterologists, residents, fellows, advanced practice providers, nurses, and other healthcare professionals, just like you. They join to support research, to access professional and patient IBD education, and to establish themselves as IBD subject matter experts. Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation Professional Members are the first to know about new patient resources, just like this one.

What is this resource designed to do? 

This webpage is an example of the Foundation’s educational tools focusing on biosimilars to enable patients to make informed decisions.

Why is this webpage necessary? 

Despite significant cost savings achieved with increased utilization of biosimilars1, current US market share is only 0.9%2. Provider and patient knowledge gap presents a critical barrier to the use of biosimilars and positive health outcomes3.

According to a 2020 Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation survey, 74% of IBD patients hadn’t heard about biosimilars, and many of those who had heard about them didn’t understand what they were4. This knowledge gap leaves patients vulnerable to the “nocebo effect,” negative health outcomes that are associated with reluctance and negative associations about switching5.


The editorial There Is No Substitute for Effective Education About Biosimilars in Crohn’s & Colitis 360 includes additional insights from the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation and its professional members3.

How does this resource help? 

• Offers accessible, accurate definitions of biosimilars with key points that are easy to remember

• Directs patients to additional tools such as anIBD Medication Guide and Recently ApprovedTreatments

• Includes short videos as well as a comprehensive webinar to prepare patients and caregivers for productive conversations with their healthcare team


1.  Mulcahy AW, Hlavka JP, Case SR. Biosimilar cost savings in the United States: initial experience and future potential. Rand Health Q. 2018;7:3.

2. Kim SC, Sarpatwari A, Landon JE, Desai RJ.Utilization and treatment costs of tumor necrosis factor inhibitors after the introduction of biosimilar infliximab in the United States. ArthritisRheumatol. 2020;72:1036–1038.

3. Ross M Maltz, MD, Megan McNicol, PharmD,Laura Wingate, BA, Sarah Buchanan, BFA, AngelaSandell, MD, Sandra C Kim, MD, David T Rubin,MD, There Is No Substitute for EffectiveEducation About Biosimilars, Crohn’s & Colitis 360, Volume 3, Issue 4, October 2021, otab047,

4. Wingate L. Improving patient & provider education about biosimilars. IBD Visible. 2020.

5. Pouillon L, Socha M, Demore B, et al. The nocebo effect: a clinical challenge in the era of biosimilars.Expert Rev Clin Immunol. 2018;14(9):739–749.


Professional membership is a way I convey gratitude to the Foundation for all the resources and support it provides to IBD patients, families, and caregivers.   – Dr. Lilani Perera, MD, who contributed to this feature 

Millennium Medical Publishing, Inc