Lilly to Introduce Lower-Priced Insulin

I was kinda surprised by everyone’s reaction to this. I felt really happy. But, all the diabetics I met with in person, and my own dad, and members of the legislature, seemed even more mad. I don’t think this ends here. They all said many of the same things that you guys say.

Half off of totally outrageous is still an outrageous price. It’s not like they are doing constant R&D on this stuff. It’s been around since 1996–24 years!


That’s exactly what it is, a PR move to deflect as you stated.

Thats what the Senator said.

Did not read the article but appears that Lilly was sued for ‘low prices’ in a perceived attempt to buy the market. Seems to me that anti-monopoly laws would have better served the community. Isn’t the heart of corporate America to produce something equivalent or better at a lower cost than competition and drive consumers to your product?

This smacks of what department stores would do. Bring in an item at “full price” for a period of time so that they can then advertise it on sale. The sale price being the price they meant to sell it at all along. So keep raising the price of insulin so that we can come out with a generic version at a high price, but get to say see how we lowered the price?

I worry that Medicare will require me to use “generic Humalog” in my pump instead of the FIASP I currently use. If so, my A1c will increase and my use of insulin will go from 5 vials/month to 8 vials/month.

At present Medicare is not allowed to make differential decisions of insulin’s. It is unlikely to be changed. At least not without a very big fight by pharma.

Medicare doesn’t cover Humalog so I had to go to Novalog. I pay $42 a month till I reach the donut hole and it starts to go up around September. That’s when it hits $109. After that it just keeps going up till the new year starts. I would welcome a lower price, if Medicare approves it and I can take it. If it is just a different label and the same liquid in the vial then let’s get started.

Do you have a link for that? I can’t find specific info from Medicare regarding Humalog coverage.

My admittedly incomplete knowledge of Medicare rules tells me that it probably isn’t Medicare that isn’t covering Humalog. Since I’ve been on Medicare, I’ve used Humalog, Novolog, and FIASP. I use an insulin pump, so my insulin is covered under Part B. Medicare picks up the majority of the tab and my supplement (Plan G) picks up the rest. If I wasn’t on a pump, it would go to Part D, and each Part D insurer has their own formulary that says what they will and won’t cover. Without more information on what your particular situation is with respect to coverage, I can’t say for sure, but since you’re paying a copay, it sounds like you have Part D coverage and your plan doesn’t have Humalog in their formulary.

I am on Medicare part D for Humalog/Lantus but I buy my insulin in Canada as it is 90% less cost than US MSRP and therefore a lot less to pay directly out of pocket in Canada than even my co-pay when I am outside donut. Once in donut hole, which happens very fast with insulin, the co-pays are horrendous.

My insulin is covered 100% by part B, since I have an insulin pump. Another good reason to be a pumper!


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I am old enough to remember when things were NOT done in this manner.

Health INSURANCE was for hospitalizations and called medical insurance.

If you went to your doctor, you paid cash. You knew what his fee would be for an office visit. Reasonable and affordable for even the low income person.

Labs and x-rays were also paid by the patient if done outside of the hospital. That was an unknown fee until the bill was presented. This could be frightening. A FULL battery of labs were less than $150.

Medications were cash payment but very reasonable fees and you could ask the cost before you got a prescription filled. One price for ALL persons.

There were NO networks. There were NO “negotiated” prices.

Then the government and the insurance companies got creative and prices for medical CARE and medical INSURANCE went up, up, and up.

Decisions were no longer made between the physician and the patient.

Medicare began in the 60’s and the government had its say in a person’s care.

HMO’s began and the insurance company needed to “approve” before tests could be ordered, etc.

The medical system seemed to work fairly well and at reasonable fees back in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

It was the creative ideas that started the failure of the health care system in the United States which has spiraled costs and limited care.

Personally, I would like to see every aspect of the health care system be required to post their fees for each and every service they provide. That would make each compete and would lower costs. Too much is done behind closed doors and the patient is not allowed to know how the prices are determined or what they are since they are different for different patients.

In my area of the USA, labs and imaging facilities are posting their fees and patients are making selections based on price.

This is a start but only in one area of medical costs. We need to see much more.

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In the early 1900s the diesel engine and modern farm equipment was developed. We went from about 80% of the population doing agriculture down to 2% now.

In the 1980s the personal computer came out, then in the 90s the internet became mainstream. Today its really something.

Why when with computers and the internet one person can easily do the office work that used to take a dozen people to do, why do we have more office workers then ever before ?

Computers and the internet should have had the same effect on the paperwork industry that advancements in farm equipment had on agriculture.


There are many improvements and advances over time but that does not mean that ALL changes over time are improvements.

New does not always mean “better” or “improved”. A wheel is still a wheel and continues to serve the purpose.

Maybe I am getting too old, but I can not think of anything off the top of my head that remains simplified (or efficient) when the government touches it. They just seem to complicate matters. Way too many if’s, and’s, but’s, exceptions, limitations, qualifications, etc.

I just happen to love the KIS principle. Keep It Simple. Yes, I left off the second S on purpose. I did not want to use the word Stupid.

Yes, a lot of advances have made life easier in many aspects, but some of those same advances, have also come with complications.

Please do not misunderstand me. I may like some things from the 50’s and 60’s, but I also like some of the advances and conveniences we have now that did not exist then. I just happen to prefer simplicity when possible.

It was like that, @Babs5? That’s the most interesting history of medicine I’ve read. Things started changing in the 70’s? So, that was 50 years ago… I guess I never thought about how this happened before.

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I get what your saying and it is kinda weird when I think about it that way.
They say that its called Price’s Law.

This is true in computers. There’s one really, really smart guy who basically does everything. That guys is really smart. No one can do what he does, even if they wanted to. The thing that saves the rest of us is that there aren’t very many of THAT guy. Everyone wants THAT guy. There’s not enough of them to go around.
Probably shouldn’t even post this, but when I googled: Price’s law, the first link came up and recognized where that lecture clip comes from, so the full lecture is here if you want it:

Thank you very much for your comment. Made my day.

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Thanks for expanding my perspective.