Price Hikes of Older Insulins are Driving the Insulin-Price Crisis

Aug 3, 2021 by David Wood

Price Hikes of Older Insulins are Driving the Insulin-Price Crisis
It makes sense to pay more for a newer, better drug. But why would anyone ever pay more than the rate of inflation for a decades-old drug that has no supply limitations?

If you’re buying insulin, odds are, you should be asking yourself that question.

A recent study from the University of Pittsburgh found that the driving force behind skyrocketing insulin prices is being driven by price hiking of old insulins more so than the expected overpricing of newer insulins.

In one example given in the literature, the price of Lantus, made by Sonifi, increased by 49% in 2014—more than ten years after the drug was first released.

On average, old brand-named injectables see a price increase of 15% per year. Compared to inflation, which sits at between 1.5% and 2% on average, this is an incredible rate of change.

How are insulin companies able to get away with this? The author of the study, Inmaculada Hernandez, Ph.D., had an answer for that:

"These types of insulin have been around for a while. Whereas the original patent for Lantus expired in 2015, dozens of secondary patents prevent competition, and it is this lack of competition that allows manufacturers to keep increasing prices much faster than inflation."

The only way to stop these mega-pharmaceutical companies from pricing decades-old insulins right along with brand new products is to increase competition in the market. That is exactly what BiologX means to do.

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