Insulin for less!

insulin for less

Nearly 50% of all people with diabetes use insulin. Everyone with type 1 diabetes uses it, and up to 42% of people with type 2 do too.

Unfortunately, not everyone who needs insulin can afford it. The price of insulin has reached new heights.

In the U.S., the per person cost of insulin has tripled in the past decade.

But, we have options!

Doctors offices often have free samples. You can ask your doctor if he/she has some samples you could have.

Patient assistance programs offer free or low cost medicines to people who meet program requirements. Each program has it’s own rules. Most require being a U.S. citizen or legal resident, having no prescription coverage, and meeting income guidelines.

– The Eli Lilly Patient Assistance Program offers discounts on Glucagon, Humalog, Humalin, Trulicity, among others.

– Other drug companies like Novo Nordisk and Sanofi have their own patient assistance programs to consider.

Drug discount cards are not insurance, but they may help reduce the cost of medicines. Most are available to anyone with or without insurance. Here are some free cards with apps:

EasyDrugCard


FamilyWize


NeedyMeds


WellRx

Coupons are available that reduce the cost too. Anyone can use them. These coupon apps compare prescription costs at local pharmacies, helping us pay the least amount:

GoodRx


HelpRX


OneRx

Will insulin prices continue to climb?

Hopefully not. There are small signs it may be tapering off. For instance, last year, Express scripts reported the per unit cost of Lantus dropped 14%.

Fingers crossed we’re getting close to a day when insulin is affordable for everyone who needs it. That day really can’t come soon enough!

A light at the end of the tunnel…

In the past 3 years, the patents for some insulins have expired. Manufacturers are racing to make generic versions of those insulins, which should cost less.

The first generic insulin, Basaglar (a Lantus generic), will hit the market December 15! Basaglar is expected to cost 20% less than Lantus. So, we may see slightly more savings. Phew…

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Chandra Y. Osborn PhD MPH
Chandra Y. Osborn PhD MPH

Pre-diabetes free since 2011, Dr. Osborn's a mother, wife, and expert in diabetes health communication, disparities, self-care, and leveraging health tech to improve people's lives. She's been understanding, predicting, and promoting diabetes self-care since 2003, first as a scientist and now as VP of health and behavioral informatics at One Drop.