Tips For Using Insulin Pens Safely
Insulin pens that are in use can be refrigerated or kept at room temperature and discarded after the manufacturer-listed number of days has elapsed, according to GoodRx. Often that is 28 to 30 days, but check the instructions to be certain.
Unused pens can be kept refrigerated and then warmed to room temperature when you are ready to use them. Once they are outside the fridge, the expiration date no longer applies.
Keep in mind that cartridges and prefilled pens only contain one type of insulin. Two separate injections must be given with different insulin pens if one is using two types of insulin. And you should never share an insulin pen, warns the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Also, never use a syringe to withdraw insulin from a pen or cartridge, which can lead to dosing errors when the pen is used again, advises the NHS.
Generic Vs Brand Name
Like most prescription drugs, accessing prescriptions using the generic version will likely be significantly less expensive when compared to the brand-name drug.
When it comes to insulin, it’s no different: retail prices for generic insulin lispro and insulin aspart are about half as expensive when compared to their brand-name counterparts, Humalog and Novolog. It’s also the same for the generic mixed insulins, insulin lispro, and insulin aspart, compared to Humalog and Novolog.
What Happens If You Avoid Taking Your Insulin
If you have type 1 diabetes, taking insulin is essential and you cannot live without it. If you avoid taking it, your blood sugar levels can become too high and you risk developing diabetic ketoacidosis . If left untreated, DKA could be life-threatening. Thats why its important to make sure you take your insulin.
If you have type 2 diabetes and use insulin to treat your condition, you should continue to take it as prescribed. If you avoid taking it, your blood sugar levels could become too high and you may become ill. Please speak to your healthcare professional if you have any questions or concerns about taking your insulin.
Insulin is a treatment that helps manage blood sugars, so this also reduces the risk of serious long-term complications as well a shorter-term consequences. Its still important to keep going to your appointments and manage your condition with healthy lifestyle choices. Staying active and eating a healthy diet will reduce the risk of complications from your diabetes, but insulin is also an important part of your treatment.
Don’t Miss: Glucose Dependent Insulinotropic Polypeptide
How Much Does A Bottle Of Insulin Cost With Insurance
It is difficult to say how much a vial of insulin costs when paying through your health plan. Each insurance plan covers insulin products differently.
It is when you actually have health insurance coverage that getting the insulin for a decent price becomes a problem, says Dr. Carnathan. In those cases, the patients are sometimes forced to switch to a different and cheaper type of insulin called NPH or 70/30 among a few others. These insulins have been around for a long time and are affordable. The patient needs a primary care doctor or endocrinologist who is comfortable using these older insulins and adjusting them safely.
Each health plan has varying copays and deductibles, too. For example, for people with a high-deductible plan, the cash price for insulin is paid until you meet the deductible. Some copays can be as high as 50% of the cost of the medication.
It can also sometimes be difficult for people on Medicare to afford insulin. Many patients who are faced with the high cost of insulin find themselves caught in the Medicare donut hole, says Gail Trauco, RN, the principal CEO of The PharmaKon LLC.
Like uninsured customers, patient assistance programs might be of help to Medicare customers. However, these programs require an application, which can take 30 to 60 days for review and approval, and documentation with receipts to confirm your monthly cost-of-living expenses.
Total Daily Insulin Requirement:
= 500 ÷ TDI = 1unit insulin/ 12 g CHO
This example above assumes that you have a constant response to insulin throughout the day. In reality, individual insulin sensitivity varies. Someone who is resistant in the morning, but sensitive at mid-day, will need to adjust the insulin-to-carbohydrate ratio at different meal times. In such a case, the background insulin dose would still be approximately 20 units however, the breakfast insulin-to-carbohydrate ratio might be breakfast 1:8 grams, lunch 1:15 grams and dinner 1:12 grams.
The insulin to carbohydrate ratio may vary during the day.
Don’t Miss: Metformin 500 Side Effects
Are You A Business Owner
These days, your employees have many different options right at their fingertips. Depending on the job market and sector that you operate in, there could be countless competitors who want to work with your top performers.
As a business, you need to bring something new and better to the table. One of the best ways that you can do that is to offer excellent healthcare coverage with the option of a Health Spending Account. By doing this, you are telling your employees that you value their health and want to give them as many different options as possible to take care of themselves.
Many healthcare companies simply dont understand the business side of things, so their products are not what youre looking for. At Group Enroll, we only work with insurance providers who are committed to supporting small business owners and offer solutions that can actually meet the needs of Canadian businesses.
We operate in a transparent, quick way that makes healthcare and healthcare options easy to understand. Our goal is to make both you and all of your employees comfortable with your healthcare options and feel satisfied that they are fully covered if the time comes for them to need to go to the hospital or get life-saving medication.
Get in touch with our team today for a no-pressure consultation to get quotes from multiple providers all in one place!
How Much Does Insulin Cost Without Insurance In 2021
The cost of insulin has steadily increased over the past few years. This price rise is disproportionate to annual inflation. It poses a threat to people living with diabetes who cannot afford to pay for these increased prices but need insulin to survive. The retail price for insulin can be over $140 for a brand-name Humalog KwikPen however, patients can now pay about $60 for generic insulin such as lispro KwikPen.
MiraRx can help you access insulin for an affordable price. At $25 per month, you can access affordable urgent care visits, low-cost lab testing, virtual care, and more. .
Don’t Miss: How Many Points Does Metformin Lower Blood Sugar
Throw Away Insulin And Use A New Vial Pen Or Cartridge If:
Insulin has been left where it is very hot or very cold.
Insulin is cloudy or contains particles.
It is later than the expiration date on the vial, pen, or cartridge.
It has been more than 28 days since you began using the vial, pen, or cartridge.
Put a label on your pen, vial, or cartridge with date opened.
- Insulin vials have U-100 insulin. That means there are 100 units of insulin in each milliliter of insulin.
- Humalog® insulin comes in 3 mL vials or 10 mL vials.
- All other types of insulin come in 10 mL vials. Insulin pens or cartridges come in boxes of five 3 mL pens or cartridges.
Who Should Not Take Levemir
Do not take Levemir® if:
- you have an allergy to Levemir® or any of the ingredients in Levemir®.
Before taking Levemir®, tell your health care provider about all your medical conditions including, if you are:
- pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
- taking new prescription or over-the-counter medicines, including supplements.
Talk to your health care provider about how to manage low blood sugar.
You May Like: Side Affects Of Metformin
Generics And Biosimilar Forms Of Insulin
Generic and biosimilar forms of insulin have helped lower the price overall. Generic forms of medications contain the same active ingredients and effectiveness. Insulin is a Biologic drug. A Biologic drug or biopharmaceutical is any pharmaceutical drug product manufactured in or extracted from a biological source. These types of drugs are often extremely difficult to recreate, and in turn, Biosimilars are created. Biosimilars are developed by a pharmaceutical manufacturer creating a close copy of the drug instead of a replica. The generic form of insulin is still commonly the most cost-effective way to purchase insulin. Biosimilars are still a cheaper form of a brand-name drug.
How Many Doses Of Insulin Are In A Vial
Moreover, how long does 100mg of insulin last?
Also, how do you calculate day supply for insulin?
calculatedayssupply for insulincalculateday
Can you really get insulin at Walmart for $25?
you can purchase $25 insulinWalmartWalmarttheytheyinsulin
How many units of insulin does the average diabetic take?
How much insulin dodiabetesunits of insulininsulin
Recommended Reading: Pasta Bad For Diabetes
New Product Features Can Come With A High Price Tag
Xultophy and Soliqua both contain a long-acting insulin and another non-insulin diabetes medication. Xultophy is a combination of insulin degludec plus liraglutide , and Soliqua is a mix of insulin glargine plus lixisenatide . Average retail prices for Soliqua and Xultophy are more than double the price of cheaper alternatives like Basaglar and Tresiba, which have the same exact insulin ingredient.
Approved in June 2020, Lyumjev contains insulin lispro, the same insulin in Humalog, and some additional ingredients. In studies, Lyumjev was found to start lowering blood glucose sooner than Humalog, though this doesnt necessarily make Lyumjev more effective than Humalog or generic insulin lispro at lowering blood sugar. At present, per insulin unit prices for Lyumjev are about double that of generic insulin lispro.
Fiasp contains insulin aspart, the same insulin in Novolog, but it also has vitamin B3. Like Lyumjev, Fiasps added ingredient may speed up insulin absorption. Interestingly, the retail prices for Fiasp and Novolog are about the same on a per insulin unit basis.
Vials Are Cheaper Than Newer Dispensers
In 1985, Novo Nordisk introduced the first insulin pen, making it more convenient for patients to store and self-inject insulin but it came at a price. Today, retail prices of rapid-acting insulins can be almost 40% more expensive if you opt for pens instead of vials.
New dispensers make insulin more expensive. Were seeing that again with Afrezza, the only insulin to be delivered as an inhalable powder. One unit of Afrezzas insulin can cost as much as 20 times the price of other rapid-acting insulins. Average retail prices for Afrezza have also continued rising through the pandemic. Afrezzas manufacturer, MannKind, offers the medication at reduced costs through its direct purchase program.
Here are retail prices of rapid-acting insulins as of October 2021:
Recommended Reading: What Does A Diabetic Diet Consist Of
Factors That Influence The Cost Of Insulin
Between 2001 and 2018, the average list price of insulin increased 11% annually. This equates to average annual per capita insulin costs nearing $6000. Since a patient’s out-of-pocket costs are based on the list price, consumers have undoubtedly felt the burden of these price increases.
Diabetes patients’ need for insulin to survive is indisputably one of the largest determinants of insulin cost. Insulin and insulin analogs are the only drugs able to save the lives of diabetes patients therefore, consumers’ need for these drugs to stay alive gives way to high pricing for profits. In other words, since diabetic patients have no other options, they have no other choice but to pay the price that the stakeholders set.
The three primary factors in the pricing of insulin vials are as follows:
The Current Insulin Price In Canada
Insulin in Canada typically costs $30 to $40 per vial, with most diabetics using between one and ten vials per month. While that price is much lower than many other countries, it is still a higher price than most Canadians are willing to pay, and it has gone up in recent years. For example, between 2010 and 2015, the average price of insulin in Canada jumped more than 50%.
There are several reasons for the leap. Primarily, the demand for insulin is on the rise. More and more Canadians are diabetic than ever before. Additionally, theres plenty of cross-border need for Canadian insulin. Americans from border cities and towns regularly cross over to buy insulin, which can cost more than 900% more in the US, increasing the price even further.
Finally, the formula for insulin changed over the past several years. It is more effective now than in the past and is also more expensive to make.
You May Like: Can A Diabetic Eat Macaroni And Cheese
How Insulin Injection Methods Compare
Insulin injections are taken by people with diabetes whose bodies dont make insulin, dont make enough of it, or dont respond effectively to the insulin they are making, according to MedlinePlus. They are typically self-administered, up to several times a day, using a needle, syringe, and vial a pen or a computerized pump with a tube that is inserted by needle under the skin of the abdomen and kept in place with tape, notes the Cleveland Clinic. On average, people with type 1 diabetes each injected 62 units of insulin daily in 2016 and spent $5,705 annually on insulin, according to the Health Care Cost Institute .
For many people, the least-expensive way to take insulin is using a needle, syringe, and vial, because these supplies are most likely to be covered under Medicare, state Medicaid plans, and private insurance than other injection methods, according to a study published in April 2018 in European Endocrinology. But syringe delivery is also the most painful and difficult method, with a higher risk of dosing errors and hypoglycemia episodes than other methods.
People who use pumps have insulin delivered to them 24 hours a day in a manner that mimics the bodys own way of releasing insulin. Yet pump delivery can be expensive costing as much as $4,500 for the device without insurance, an additional $1,500 per year in supplies, according to an article published in June 2017 in the American Journal of Managed Care.
Why Is Insulin So Expensive In Canada
Canadians pay approximately $35+ per vial of insulin. In Canada, there is no coverage for syringes and alcohol swabs which are the main way people with diabetes administer insulin. Additionally, people with diabetes need to test their glucose several times daily, and each time they do it can cost approximately $1.
Don’t Miss: Glipizide Metformin Warnings
The Role Of Insurance
The ADAs Insulin Access and Affordability Working Group report found that nearly half of Americans have employer-sponsored health insurance. About 20% are insured through Medicaid, and 14% are insured through Medicare. Approximately 7% of Americans purchase health insurance on their owneither directly from an insurer or through a health insurance exchange. About 9% of Americans remain uninsured.
Diabetes is considered a pre-existing condition. According to research published in Diabetes Care, an estimated 1.9 million uninsured people with diabetes gained insurance coverage after the Affordable Care Act went into effect. More than half of those who gained insurance were low-income.
Still, having insurance doesn’t mean insulin is affordable. Insured patients will often pay a copay or a percentage, rather than the list price, for their insulin. Redmond says that cost could range from $30 to $50.
In cases of high-deductible health plans, patients have to pay the list price for their insulin until their deductible is met, which often translates to thousands of dollars out of pocket. Many patients just have a problem paying that much, says Redmond.
Why Has Insulin Become So Expensive
Insulin is expensive because three companies carry 96% of the insulin market. Three is not enough companies to drive price competition, especially when your product is a matter of life and death. To boot, the U.S. government found that the three companies that carry the market share have illegally boosted drug prices alongside pharmacy benefit managers to drive profit.
For the moment, we are stuck with the Big Three: Novo Nordisk, Eli Lilly, and Sanofi.
In 2019, Senator Chuck Grassley , launched an investigation into the big three companies as well as the countrys most powerful pharmacy benefit managers , CVS Caremark, Express Scripts, and OptumRx. In January 2021, the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance released the findings of the investigation, unveiling undeniable evidence that Sanofi, Lilly, and Novo Nordisk actively ignored the needs of consumers by raising insulin prices without regard to the drugs efficacy. Most importantly, the investigation also found that insulin spending was a fraction of manufacturers revenue and sales and marketing expenses. Indeed, most pharmaceutical companies do spend more on marketing than they do on research and development.
You May Like: Diabetic Rash On Chest
Other Ways Diabetics Can Take Care Of Themselves
Getting your insulin is only one piece of the pie. People with diabetes need to take care of themselves in different ways, including sticking to a healthy lifestyle and ensuring that their condition does not worsen.
If you are diabetic or prediabetic, please consider taking the following steps to improve your health and decrease your need for extra insulin.