Walmart plans to enter the insulin market. And the retail giant wants to offer the life-saving drug for a cheaper alternative than competitors. According to Daily Mail, Walmart will be offering insulin at a discounted price.
So how much will insulin cost? The retail company will sell pre-filled pens for $86 and insulin vials for $73. Walmart will sell the medication through its brand ReliOn. Reportedly, Walmart is cutting the price on the drug by 75 percent compared to other alternatives. For instance, insulin averages $251 for pens and $101 per vial elsewhere.
People with Type 1 Diabetes have long lamented the increased prices of insulin in the country. For instance, the average person spends around $5,700 a year on the drug. Combine that with 34 million people who have diabetes in the country, and Americans are spending a fortune on insulin. According to the American Diabetes Association, around one in seven dollars spent in healthcare goes to insulin treatments.
For the uninitiated, insulin helps regulate sugars within the body. People with Type 1 diabetes require insulin shots to help regulate their body’s blood sugars. The cost of insulin has been on a steady rise, more than doubling since 2012.
Walmart Creates Cheaper Alternative
Through ReliOn, Walmart has produced its own version of insulin. It’s called NovoLog and costs only $73. NovoLog is reportedly fast-acting and will sufficiently control high blood sugar levels. Walmart designed the drug to mimic insulin within the human body, making it more effective than older versions of the drug.
“We know many people with diabetes struggle to manage the financial burden of this condition. And we are focused on helping by providing affordable solutions,” said Dr. Cheryl Pegus, executive vice president of Walmart Health & Wellness, in a statement.
Customers can save around $101 to $251, making them a cheaper solution for many families. Walmart worked directly to try to cut down on costs on the drug. By having its own manufacturer Novo Nordisk, Walmart could lower how much the insulin will be for consumers. The retail giant expects to add the drug to both its Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacies in mid-July. The insulin will join a space that includes both lancets and blood glucose monitors.
“We also know this is a condition that disproportionately impacts underserved populations. With ReliOn NovoLog insulin, we’re adding a high-quality medication for diabetes to the already affordable ReliOn line of products and continuing our commitment to improve access and lowering cost of care,” Pegus continued.
CEO of the American Diabetes Association Tracy Brown also commented on the new cost-saving brand. She believes the move will make it easier on families across the country.
“Diabetes often comes with high medical costs, estimated around $9,601 per person per year,” she said. “We welcome all affordable solutions that make diabetes management more accessible to millions of Americans living with diabetes.”