Avella Selected by GlaxoSmithKline to Retain Access to Benlysta®

February 5, 2015| CATEGORIES: Corporate , Press Release

Benlysta now only available through a select group of specialty pharmacies


Avella Specialty Pharmacy announced today that it has been selected by GlaxoSmithKline as one of a group of pharmacies authorized to continue to distribute Benlysta, a medication approved by the FDA for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus in patients who have previously received other therapies.

Benlysta is a biologic drug designed to reduce the level of specific antibodies which impact the body’s autoimmune response as opposed to older medications which suppress the entire immune system. In fact, Benlysta is the first medication developed specifically for treatment of lupus in more than half a century. Other existing therapies employed to manage the condition are considered “off label” as they were developed for use in patients with other autoimmune disorders and were never FDA approved for treating lupus. Benlysta is delivered via intravenous infusion in a doctor’s office or other clinical setting.

More than 1.5 million Americans have lupus, an autoimmune disease in which the body attacks its own tissues—typically the joints, skin, nervous system, heart and other vital organs. Benlysta has given these individuals and their physicians a medication specifically designed to manage these symptoms.

“People living with lupus deserve a therapy that has been proven to meet their unique health needs," said Leslie Yendro, RN, Vice President of Business Development for Avella Specialty Pharmacy. “We are proud to be able to continue offering this trusted medication to physicians and their patients.”

Avella is frequently selected by manufacturers to offer limited distribution drugs based on the company’s focus on clinical expertise, patient education, high-touch service and provider support. This includes working on behalf of patients to secure prior authorizations from insurance companies and financial assistance from manufacturers and non-profits, whenever available. Avella’s staff members also have extensive expertise in guiding, educating and supporting patients with serious medical conditions while easing clinical and administrative burdens faced by prescribing physicians.

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About Avella Specialty Pharmacy

Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Avella Specialty Pharmacy is a National Accredited Specialty Pharmacy, providing individualized care and support to patients since 1996. Avella's clinical pharmacists and staff members are experts in managing complex disease states and providing compassionate care. The company offers a nationwide distribution service to complement its retail locations. Avella reached 1,105th on Inc. Magazine's 2013 list of the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies in the country. In addition, the Arizona Corporate Excellence Awards has named Avella Specialty Pharmacy as the fastest-growing private company based in the state. For more information, please visit

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