Moving Forward Together: The Strong State of ARN Rheumatology
The American Rheumatology Network (ARN) continues to grow rapidly as rheumatologists discover the value of the ARN-GPO and the benefits of additional no-cost services such as data analytics and value-based contracting. Eighteen months after forming, ARN has grown to over 300 prescribing providers, more than double that number if counting administrators and clinical staff members. We believe this success follows the singular focus of ARN, providing high-value services to empower independent rheumatology practices across the U.S.
ARN always puts the patient first. We believe that community rheumatology practice (private practice) is the highest quality, most accessible, and lowest cost site of care for our patients.
ARN exemplifies the collaborative spirit of rheumatologists, sourcing needs and solutions from its cooperative network of large and small practices across the country. ARN members work together through our scientific steering committee and through joint discussions with major stakeholders such as manufacturers and payers. Practice administrators collaborate closely through scheduled calls, to identify and share best practices. Indeed, economies of scale operate at the level of idea-sharing just as importantly as they do at the economic level!
ARN-Trio Registry Highlights Major Shifts in Infliximab Biosimilar Use
Analysis of the American Rheumatology Network-Trio Health (ARN-Trio) registry finds a surge in new prescriptions for Merck’s Renflexis infliximab biosimilar. The ARN-Trio registry is the first rheumatology registry to combine pharmacy dispensing data with electronic medical records (EMR) to provide unparalleled real-world insights. ARN-Trio is the largest registry of biosimilar use in community rheumatology practice, and data from 5 large practices chosen for geographic variety reveal insightful trends in infliximab biosimilar use.
Initially, the use of Pfizer’s Inflectra (infliximab-dyyb) followed by Merck’s Reflexis (infliximab abda) followed trajectories largely explained by the well-documented formulary restrictions and time to market challenges inherent to biosimilar adoption in the U.S pharmaceutical ecology. However, recent data reveals a steep rise in Renflexis starts at the expense of Inflectra market share. Read more here.
Why do Patients Discontinue Treatment?
The ARN-Trio registry recently hosted a webinar unlocking deep insights into the “Why” behind patients discontinuing prescription therapy. The recorded webinar is available here.
ARN-Trio registry uniquely employs trained chart abstractors to review unstructured data for the 369,000 patients in the registry, identifying the actual reasons for discontinuations as recorded in the visit notes. Traditionally, this information has not been available for analysis as it is not recorded in structured data fields.
The results are paradigm-changing, revealing that 86% of treatment discontinuations are associated with symptoms, and only 36% with efficacy (overlap occurs). This is startling, that in a specialty that has invested so much recent effort in measuring disease activity, the majority of medication discontinuation is actually due to tolerability (and not efficacy).
Further analysis finds that 30% of these symptoms are manageable, suggesting that medications may be abandoned unnecessarily. Contrary to what one might think, these manageable symptoms were associated with earlier treatment discontinuation when compared with more concerning or serious symptoms.
ARN-Trio is identifying the manageable symptoms associated with each drug, offering the future possibility of targeted interventions to maximize the therapeutic benefits while minimizing unnecessary discontinuations.
American Rheumatology Network Summit
November 20-21, 2020
Omni Nashville Hotel
Nashville, Tennessee

The ARN Summit focuses on private practice physicians and practice managers, focusing on practice success. Join us as we review best practices and practice benchmarking, highlighting practical steps to optimize operations and revenue. Register here!