- US drug manufacturer Eli Lilly announced Wednesday that it will slash prices for some of its older insulin products later this year and immediately expand a cap on costs that insured patients — who currently face annual costs of more than $1K — pay to fill prescriptions.1
- The company said it will cut the price of its two insulin products, Humalog and Humulin, each by 70% as well as cap the cost of commercially-insured and uninsured patients’ out-of-pocket costs at $35 per month.2
- CEO David Ricks said the company was working to address issues that impact the high prices patients often pay for insulin. He suggested that the discounts Lilly offered from its list prices often did not reach patients through insurers or pharmacy benefit managers.3
- The price cut will reduce its non-branded 'lispro' injection price from its current cost of $82.41 per vial to $25 starting May 1. The price of Humalog, its most commonly prescribed insulin, will drop from $530.40 for a five-pack of insulin pens to roughly $160 starting in the fourth quarter of 2023.4
- US Pres. Biden urged the reform at the State of the Union address last month. The US government in January began applying the cap through its federal Medicare program.5
- The number of Americans with diabetes has doubled to more than 37.3M over the past 20 years, and at least 16.5% of insulin users report rationing it due to the drug's price more than tripling between 2002 and 2013. Eli Lilly reiterated more must be done, as 70% of diabetics don't use the company's insulin products.6
- Left narrative, as provided by Pbs newshour. As Democrat-run California pushes for its own insulin price cap law and Biden calls on companies to do their part in making healthcare affordable, Eli Lilly has heeded the government's calling. As one of the largest insulin manufacturers in the world, this move could be the beginning of a genuinely transformational collaboration between the government and the private sector to ensure that diabetics get the affordable care they require and deserve.
- Right narrative, as provided by Breitbart. The cost of insulin is not a left-right issue, but rather a race to see who can claim responsibility for finally lowering the life-saving drug's price. Donald Trump signed an executive order that did the same thing as Biden's Medicare price cap legislation, but Biden suspended it once he took office. Republican Sen. Josh Hawley, too, called for a federal cap of $25 — 10 dollars lower than what Democrats are calling for. This is not a partisan win for Democrats because both sides want their constituents to have affordable medicine.