Eli Lilly and Company Announces 70% Reductions in Insulin Prices

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Announced on March 1, Eli Lilly and Company's reduction in insulin product list prices includes non-branded insulin lispro, Rezvoglar, KwikPens, Humulin, and Humalog. The company would also be instituting an out-of-pocket cost cap of $35 for most insulin users.

Syringe with insulin on top of the word diabetes

Courtesy: Minerva Studio (ShutterStock)

A major victory for equitable access to insulin, Eli Lilly and Company has announced the company would be reducing the cost of price reductions of 70% for a slew of insulin products and would also be capping its Insulin Value Program to cap out-of-pocket costs at $35 per month.1

Announced on March 1, the reduced pricing will see the list price of its non-branded insulin lispro injection 100 units/mL, reduced to $25 a vial, the list priceof insulin glargine-aglr (Rezvoglar) injection reduce to $92 per 5 pack of KwikPens, and the list prices of insulin human (Humulin) and insulin lispro injection (Humalog) reduced by 70% within 2023. 1The company would also be providing a downloadable savings card for those without insurance to receive Eli Lilly and Company insulins for $35 per month.1

"While the current healthcare system provides access to insulin for most people with diabetes, it still does not provide affordable insulin for everyone and that needs to change," said David A. Ricks, Lilly's Chair and CEO. "The aggressive price cuts we're announcing today should make a real difference for Americans with diabetes. Because these price cuts will take time for the insurance and pharmacy system to implement, we are taking the additional step to immediately cap out-of-pocket costs for patients who use Lilly insulin and are not covered by the recent Medicare Part D cap."

With the affordability of insulin a topic of discussion among most people with diabetes and other insulin users, the news of Eli Lilly and Company’s decision will come as a relief to many in the community. In their announcement, the company pointed out the $35 per month out-of-pocket cost cap would apply to the majority of retail pharmacies, but would not people enrolled in federal government insurance programs due to government restrictions. However the release highlighted federal law provides that Medicare Part D beneficiaries also pay no more than $35 per month for insulin.1

A nationwide public awareness campaign is expected to launch in the coming weeks to improve knowledge of access to Eli Lilly and Company’s affordability solutions. Of note, the reduction in list price of insulin lips injection 100 units/mL to $25 a vial is expected to go into effect May 1, 2023, the reduction in price of insulin glargine-aglr injection to $92 per 5 pack of KwikPens is expected to go into effect April 1, 2023, and the reduction in prices of insulin human and insulin lispro injection (Humalog) by 70% is expected to go into effect in Q4 2023.1

In their announcement, Eli Lilly and Company pointed out the reduction in non-branded insulin lispro injection 100 units/mL to $25 a vial would make it the lowest list-priced mealtime insulin available and less than the price of a Humalog vial in 1999. Additionally, the reduction in price of insulin glargine-aglr injection, which is a basal insulin biosimilar to and interchangeable with Lantus, represents a 78% discount comparative to Lantus.1

"We are driving for change in repricing older insulins, but we know that 7 out of 10 Americans don't use Lilly insulin. We are calling on policymakers, employers and others to join us in making insulin more affordable," Ricks added.1 "For the past century, Lilly has focused on inventing new and improved insulins and other medicines that address the impact of diabetes and improve patient outcomes. Our work to discover new and better treatments is far from over. We won't stop until all people with diabetes are in control of their disease and can get the insulin they need."

In a statement from the American Diaebtes Association (ADA), Chuck Henderson, chief executive officer of the ADA, commended Eli Lilly and Company's move and referred to it as an "important step" to limiting insulin costs for patients.2

“The American Diabetes Association is the leading voice advocating for insulin affordability and is working to ensure that all people with diabetes have access to the care they need. We applaud Eli Lilly for taking the important step to limit cost-sharing for its insulin, and we encourage other insulin manufacturers to do the same," Henderson said.2 "While we have been able to help achieve significant progress on the issue of insulin affordability, including Medicare’s new out-of-pocket cost cap on insulin, state copay caps, and patient assistance developments from insulin manufacturers, we know that our work is not done. ADA will work to ensure that Eli Lilly’s patient assistance program is benefiting patients as intended and continue the fight so that everyone who needs insulin has access.”

References:

  1. Lilly cuts insulin prices by 70% and caps patient insulin out-of-pocket costs at $35 per month. Eli Lilly and Company. https://investor.lilly.com/news-releases/news-release-details/lilly-cuts-insulin-prices-70-and-caps-patient-insulin-out-pocket. Published March 1, 2023. Accessed March 1, 2023.
  2. The American Diabetes Association statement on Eli Lilly's expansion of insulin value program. Eli Lilly Expansion of Insulin Value Program | ADA. https://diabetes.org/newsroom/press-releases/2023/american-diabetes-association-statement-on-eli-lilly-expansion-of-insulin-value-program. Published March 1, 2023. Accessed March 1, 2023.

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