Insulin Prices from a Diabetic’s Point of View

Olivia Cooper

More stories from Olivia Cooper


Courtesy of Wikipedia

Pre-filled insulin syringes; commonly known as insulin pens.

Insulin prices have been debated in the healthcare field for many years. Insulin prices are extremely high without the proper insurance or with no insurance.

 Insulin is an essential medicine for a diabetic. The need for it is life or death. With prices through the roof, it is extremely hard to keep track and manage the expense. 

With the insurance I have, it costs roughly $35.00 for a box of pens. Now, with insulin, you can purchase them in a vial or pen format. I have always used pens, so I still use them in case of pump failure.

Insurance can significantly decrease the cost of insulin, but this price doesn’t account for your pumps, glucose monitors, and other supplies needed daily to monitor your diabetes.

 My grandmother is also a type one diabetic, and she purchases insulin vials. Five vials of insulin costs her approximately $149.00 with her Medicare plan. This price is for fast-acting insulin. 

Long-acting, if you don’t use a pump, can up your costs. It can cost roughly the same as fast acting. 

All the prices also matter with insurance. For instance, the insulin I was using at one point was not covered by my insurance, so I had to switch for it to be cheaper. A pack of insulin pens can range closer to $600.00 without insurance. That is a little over $100.00 per pen. 

The cost to produce an insulin pen is almost 1/10 the price it is sold for. This is simply too high. I need insulin to survive, and it often gets wasted due to pump failure, a cracked vile, or it expires. 

The amount of frustration that is had within a family is impeccable. Dealing with insurance and doctors adds to the load, and it can be so much that sometimes the need to care for yourself vanishes. 

So, be kind when you see someone with devices, and most of us are more than welcome to answer any of your questions.