We know there’s a lot of frustration and anger about the price of
insulin. We also know there is much more to do to achieve real change.
Novo Nordisk is committed to be an active part of the change that is
needed and find real-world solutions for people living with diabetes.
We’re actively engaged with the diabetes community to do our best to
address a number of challenging issues. We also understand that for
many, change can’t come soon enough. Indeed, policymakers and others
are looking to companies like ours for ideas for solving
affordability. Ultimately, any solution should make buying medicines
easier for patients, effectively work within the broader healthcare
system and be sustainable for innovation. With this in mind, we would
like to update you since we last shared our perspective on what’s
happened to insulin prices and our ongoing efforts.
It’s our firm belief that medicines should be accessible to all who
need them. However, we recognize that to get this done we can’t do it
alone. We’re seeking constructive discussions that can help us move
the needle towards simplifying our complex healthcare system.
Collaboration among pharmaceutical companies, PBMs, insurance
companies, employers, patient organizations and policy makers will
drive the change that’s needed and ultimately help find sustainable
solutions. To date, we have embarked on several efforts that range
from proactive internal policy decisions to innovative collaborations
and partnerships. We believe these efforts are positive steps,
reflecting our values and commitments as an organization, and
underscore how we’re dedicated to improving the lives of people living
with diabetes. Some of our efforts have included:
- We joined cost savings programs run by CVS Health and ESI
which now make our Novolin line of insulins available for around $25
a vial. (Novolin has been available at Wal-Mart under the Relion
brand for years at the same price.) We’re aware of the criticism
around only offering human insulin. Given the current healthcare
system, more work needs to be done to identify sustainable routes to
offer a discount outside of our human insulin line. Learn more about
these discount programs.
- We talked to professional and
patient organizations for the diabetes community, and insulin
pricing task forces, to share our perspectives and continue to
actively listen to their concerns.
- Our patient support
program offers free medicines. A family of four making up to
$103,000 annually could potentially qualify and many have already
benefitted from this ongoing program. [We updated this figure in
- Since first making our
pricing pledge in 2016, we’ve kept annual list price increases
to single digits in 2017 and 2018.
Are we done? No. Is this enough? No.
We are committed to not only driving but also putting in place
positive change. We know the burden of working within the larger
healthcare system can make progress seem slow and we know that
sometimes we get it right and sometimes we don’t. But at Novo Nordisk,
we won’t give up. This is what makes us who we are.