Larry Labagnara, Director, Managed Markets Marketing, Sunovion Pharmaceuticals
Medications to treat epilepsy are as diverse as the condition itself—there are more than 25 anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) and different AEDs are effective for a variety of seizure types. Aptiom (eslicarbazepine acetate) is indicated for one of the most common types of epileptic seizure and is one of only a handful of branded AEDs available in a predominantly generic market. That means Aptiom must differentiate and demonstrate value to achieve competitive formulary position that is viable for physician and patient access. Thanks to Larry Labagnara, Aptiom has been able to deliver upon this goal.
Aptiom initially launched as adjunctive therapy for use in adult patients, and two years later received an expanded indication for use as monotherapy. More recently, in the fall of 2017, Aptiom gained FDA approval for use in pediatric patients. Through this evolution, the Aptiom brand has seen incremental growth in payer access across Commercial, Government-sponsored, and Long-Term Care channels. Larry has maintained a highly customer-centric focus by refining the brand message and reach to each of these payer stakeholders. For the launch of the pediatric indication, Larry created a comprehensive multichannel platform targeting the entire care continuum from payers to prescribers and pharmacists, addressing the unmet needs in pediatric epilepsy and the value Aptiom can bring to this vulnerable patient population.
Furthermore, Larry introduced customizable resources to augment the knowledge of Aptiom field representatives to effectively discuss up-to-date formulary coverage from a national and local perspective with providers to help minimize any perceived barriers to product access. And he remains dedicated to ensuring Aptiom is competitively positioned on health plan formularies so that physicians and patients have access to all available therapeutic options in managing epilepsy.