Affordability of insulin has become a major issue for patients with diabetes in the United States. The price of insulin, particularly insulin analogues, has increased substantially over the past 2 decades.
Insulin prices in the United States have risen dramatically in recent years, yet pharmacies cannot provide a stable price for a given insulin due to factors that are not widely understood.
The increasing cost of prescription drugs in the United States has become a source of concern for patients, prescribers, payers, and policy makers.
Biosimilars are regulated differently from small‐molecule generic, chemically derived medicines. The complexity of biological products means that small changes in manufacturing or formulation may result in changes in efficacy and safety of the final product.
Even as a medical student, I was interested in the history of insulin. As an endocrine fellow, I read The Discovery of Insulin by Michael Bliss.
A recent study demonstrated widespread substitution of analog for human insulin and rising out-of-pocket costs in privately insured people with type 2 diabetes in the United States.
Substantial attention has been given to the issue of access to medicines for communicable diseases; however, access to essential medicines for diabetes, especially insulin, has had insufficient focus.
The cost of management of complications from diabetes in the USA amounted to US$263 billion (about £171 billion) in 2013, up from $92 billion (about £60 billion) in 2002.
Insulin is a vital medicine for patients with diabetes mellitus. Newer, more expensive insulin products and the lack of generic insulins in the United States have increased costs for patients and insurers.
In 2012, an estimated 29 million individuals, or 9.3% of the US population, had diabetes, with 30.8% of these patients using insulin.
To assess the cost implications of diabetes prevention, it is important to know the lifetime medical cost of people with diabetes relative to those without.
Insulin analogs are molecularly altered forms of insulin. Compared with human synthetic and animal insulin for treatment of type 2 diabetes, short-acting analogs may offer flexible dosing and convenience, long-acting analogs less nocturnal hypoglycemia, but both at greater cost.
This study updates previous estimates of the economic burden of diagnosed diabetes and quantifies the increased health resource use and lost productivity associated with diabetes in 2012.