Drugs Pharma

Novo Nordisk follows Eli Lilly on insulin price cuts

Denmark's Novo Nordisk plans to effect a 75% cut in insulin prices in the U.S. market by January 1, 2024.

HQ Team

March 14, 2023: Denmark’s Novo Nordisk plans to effect a 75% cut in insulin prices in the U.S. market by January 1, 2024.

The new price of the products, in both categories of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, apply to pre-filled pens and vials of basal or long-acting insulin and bolus, short-acting, and pre-mix insulins.

The insulins include Levemir, Novocain, Novolog and Novolog Mix (70:30), according to a company statement. It is also lowering the price of unbranded biologics to match the branded insulin’s price.

Novo Nordisk’s move comes after, on March 1, US-based Eli Lilly reduced its price of insulins by 70% and an expansion of its insulin value programme that caps patient out-of-pocket costs at $35 or less monthly.

Effective May 1, 2023, the company’s Lispro injection, at $25 a vial, will be the lowest list-priced mealtime insulin available and less than a Humalog vial in 1999.

More incentives

Eli Lilly is also hitting the market with Rezvoglar (insulin glargine-aglr) injection for $92 per five-pack of KwikPens, a 78% discount to Lantus, effective April. 

The decision to cut prices closes the gaps in the U.S. healthcare system that keep some people with diabetes from accessing affordable insulin, according to Eli Lilly’s statement.

According to the Novo Nordisk statement, some patients find it difficult to pay for healthcare. 

“We have been working to develop a sustainable path forward that balances patient affordability, market dynamics, and evolving policy changes,” said Steve Albers, senior vice president, Market Access & Public Affairs at Novo Nordisk, Inc.

Novo Nordisk is also implanting co-pays for as little as $25-35 for several insulin products for eligible patients in commercial insurance plans.

It has a 30-day supply of a combination of insulin products (up to three vials or two packs of pens) for $99, equating to $33 a vial or $ 49.50 a pack of pens.

One-time free supply

The company has a one-time free 30-day supply of insulin (up to three vials or two packs of pens) to eligible patients at risk of rationing. It offers 90 days of free insulin to eligible patients who lost healthcare coverage due to COVID-19 job loss.

Eli Lilly and Novo Nordisk made the price reductions following the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act by President Joe Biden.

The Act capped insulin prices for Medicare recipients at $35 per month. It does not include patients without insurance.

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