SAN DIEGO, May 20, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Otonomy, Inc. (Nasdaq:OTIC), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapeutics for diseases and disorders of the ear, today announced that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has approved transitional pass-through status and established a new billing code for OTIPRIO™ (ciprofloxacin otic suspension). The code, C9479, will become effective July 1, 2016.
“We welcome CMS’s decision to grant pass-through status and assign a new C code for OTIPRIO which can be used for billing in the hospital outpatient and ambulatory surgery center (ASC) settings,” said David A. Weber, Ph.D., president and CEO of Otonomy. “Furthermore, the timing of this assignment early in the launch of OTIPRIO will, we believe, be very helpful in our ongoing efforts to facilitate patient access.”
According to a CMS reference article, “C codes are unique temporary pricing codes that were initially established by CMS for the Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS). The C codes are used on Medicare OPPS claims but may also be recognized on claims from other providers or by other payment systems.” Hospital outpatient departments and ASCs billing for drugs assigned a C code are eligible for payment by Medicare for the pass-through drug in addition to the fee received by the facility for the related procedure. Pass-through payment is typically available for two to three years and Otonomy believes, based on long-standing CMS policy, that pass-through payment for OTIPRIO will be effective through the end of 2018. Coverage and payment by non-Medicare payors including Medicaid and commercial insurers is determined by each payor’s policies and individual provider contracts.
OTIPRIO (ciprofloxacin otic suspension) is a fluoroquinolone antibacterial indicated for the treatment of pediatric patients with bilateral otitis media with effusion undergoing tympanostomy tube placement. OTIPRIO is administered by a physician as a single 0.1 mL (6 mg) intratympanic administration into each affected ear, following suctioning of the middle ear effusion. The thermosensitive suspension exists as a liquid at or below room temperature and gels when warmed. In two Phase 3 trials, a single intraoperative administration of OTIPRIO demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in the cumulative proportion of study treatment failures compared to tubes alone (p-value <0.001).
Important Safety Information for OTIPRIO
Contraindications: OTIPRIO is contraindicated in patients with a history of hypersensitivity to ciprofloxacin, to other quinolones, or to any of the components of OTIPRIO.
Warnings and Precautions - Potential for Microbial Overgrowth: OTIPRIO may result in overgrowth of nonsusceptible bacteria and fungi. If such infections occur, institute alternative therapy.
Adverse Reactions: Adverse reactions (incidence at least 3%) that occurred in two Phase 3 trials with OTIPRIO vs sham were: nasopharyngitis (5% vs 4%), irritability (5% vs 3%), and rhinorrhea (3% vs 2%).
Use in Specific Populations - Pediatric Use: The safety and effectiveness of OTIPRIO in infants below six months of age have not been established.
Full prescribing information can be found at www.OTIPRIO.com.
Otonomy is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapeutics for diseases and disorders of the ear. OTIPRIO (ciprofloxacin otic suspension) is approved in the United States for use during tympanostomy tube placement surgery in pediatric patients, and commercial launch commenced in March 2016. OTO-104 is a steroid in development for the treatment of Ménière's disease and other severe balance and hearing disorders. Two Phase 3 trials in Ménière's disease patients are underway, with results expected during the second half of 2017. OTO-311 is an NMDA receptor antagonist for the treatment of tinnitus that is in a Phase 1 clinical safety trial. Otonomy’s proprietary formulation technology utilizes a thermosensitive gel and drug microparticles to enable single dose treatment by a physician. For additional information please visit www.otonomy.com.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements generally relate to future events or future financial or operating performance of Otonomy. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, whether payors will provide reimbursement according to the C code, the timing of any such reimbursement, how long pass-through payments and the C code will remain effective, and the timing of results for the two OTO-104 Phase 3 clinical trials in Ménière's disease. Otonomy's expectations regarding these matters may not materialize, and actual results in future periods are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by these forward-looking statements as a result of these risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to: Otonomy's limited operating history and its expectation that it will incur significant losses for the foreseeable future; Otonomy's ability to obtain additional financing; Otonomy's dependence on the commercial success of OTIPRIO and the regulatory success and advancement of additional product candidates, such as OTO-104 and OTO-311; the uncertainties inherent in the clinical drug development process, including, without limitation, Otonomy's ability to adequately demonstrate the safety and efficacy of its product candidates, the preclinical and clinical results for its product candidates, which may not support further development, and challenges related to patient enrollment in clinical trials; Otonomy's ability to obtain regulatory approval for its product candidates; side effects or adverse events associated with Otonomy's product candidates; competition in the biopharmaceutical industry; Otonomy's dependence on third parties to conduct preclinical studies and clinical trials; the impact of coverage and reimbursement decisions by third-party payors on the pricing and market acceptance of OTIPRIO; Otonomy's dependence on third parties for the manufacture of OTIPRIO and product candidates; Otonomy's dependence on a small number of suppliers for raw materials; Otonomy's ability to protect its intellectual property related to OTIPRIO and its product candidates in the United States and throughout the world; expectations regarding potential market size, opportunity and growth; Otonomy's ability to manage operating expenses; implementation of Otonomy's business model and strategic plans for its business, products and technology; and other risks. Information regarding the foregoing and additional risks may be found in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in Otonomy's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") on May 9, 2016, and Otonomy's future reports to be filed with the SEC. The forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to Otonomy as of the date hereof. Otonomy disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, except as required by law.
Heidi Chokeir, Ph.D.
Senior Vice President
Robert H. Uhl