Bristol Myers Squibb has launched two education campaigns and an annual awareness day for the condition its new heart drug Camzyos treats, with branded consumer ads on the horizon.
There’s a lot of money riding on its success: The Big Pharma spent $13.1 billion to buy MyoKardia in 2020 and get hold of the experimental cardiovascular drug then known as mavacamten. Last month, the med nabbed its first FDA approval, for patients with obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM).
And Camzyos is launching into a market that’s potentially very large: an estimated 1 in 500 people have this form of cardiomyopathy. The catch is that a large percentage of patients are undiagnosed.
“We believe the current diagnosis rates are around 23%,” said Michelle Calope, head of U.S. cardiovascular at BMS.
So, Bristol Myers’ campaigns are aimed at boosting the diagnosis rate. This includes a patient-based, unbranded education campaign, called “Could It Be HCM?”, which highlights possible signs and symptoms and encourages people to ask their doctors if they should see a cardiologist.
“This really is a call to action for patients to talk to your doctor,” Calope explained. “The symptoms of obstructive HCM are very common, so we have found patients only get a correct diagnosis through a process of elimination. We say that it shouldn’t be that way.”
As part of Could It Be HCM?, BMS has partnered with NBA player Jared Butler, who just finished his first season with the Utah Jazz. Butler, who was diagnosed with HCM while in college, will share his—and his family’s—experience with the condition.