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Lilly offers insulin at 40% discount

Published on 13/12/16 at 03:04pm

Eli Lilly has announced that it will offer its insulin medication, including Humalog, at a 40% discount for eligible patients via purchase through the Blink Health app or website. The patients likely to save on their purchase of insulin are those who have no insurance or are in the deductible phase of their high-deductible insurance plans.

Blink Health is an electronic service that allows users to purchase prescriptions drugs at a discount. Formerly, the service was only available to generic drugs only but this recent move means that this position has now shifted.

"We understand the burden people face when paying full price for insulin," said Mike Mason, vice president, Lilly Diabetes. "This platform will effectively allow Lilly to lower our insulin retail prices for users of this platform while not affecting the reimbursement system for other people living with diabetes."

Mr Mason’s comments come at a time when there is an increasing amount of public pressure being placed on the pharmaceutical industry in regards to pricing, particularly when it comes to the cost of insulin. Lilly suggested that it had come to its price reduction conclusion after having “met with multiple leaders in the diabetes community”, it said in a statement. In light of the wide-spread public dissatisfaction with the Mylan EpiPen scandal and after being criticised in tweets by Bernie Sanders, the decision can to reduce prices can be seen as a pragmatic one. It allows Lilly to point directly to action it has taken to reduce prices should the debate, as drug pricing is expected to, continue to rumble on.

The availability of the discounts will begin on January 1st. 

Ben Hargreaves

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