AAO has good news for its members

January 15, 2008

The American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS) are pleased to report that a solution has been found that addresses Genentech's decision to no longer allow compounding pharmacies to purchase Avastin (bevacizumab) directly from authorized wholesale distributors.

Message from the AAO to all its members
Issued: December 20th 2007

The American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS) are pleased to report that a solution has been found that addresses Genentech's decision to no longer allow compounding pharmacies to purchase Avastin (bevacizumab) directly from authorized wholesale distributors. The Academy and ASRS believed that this change in distribution could have impacted access to Avastin for some physicians and patients.??

Since October, when Genentech made its announcement, the Academy and ASRS have been in discussions with the company to determine how physicians and their patients can maintain their access to Avastin. Working together, we have determined that physicians can prescribe Avastin and purchase it directly from authorized wholesale distributors and wholesalers can ship to the destination of the physician's choice, including to hospital pharmacies, compounding pharmacies or directly to their office. This process is one that the Academy and ASRS believe addresses the needs of most of their members. It is a significant step forward.??

Because laws differ from state to state, the implementation of this solution may vary. The Academy and ASRS recommend that physicians check with their legal advisors when considering this new option.

Genentech also remains committed to ensuring that eligible patients have access to Lucentis regardless of their ability to pay. Therefore, Genentech, the Academy and ASRS are working together to develop additional programs that will more efficiently facilitate and expedite patient access and physician reimbursement for Lucentis. Updates on our progress will be provided in early 2008. In the meantime, physicians or patients who have questions related to access and reimbursement services offered by Genentech can call Genentech's Lucentis Commitment helpline on +1 866 724 9394.

For questions about Genentech's authorized wholesale distributors, please contact Genentech on +1 800 551 2231.