Cost Excursion Study of Various Insulin Preparations Available in India
Smita A Tiwari,
Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacology, B. J. Government Medical College and Sassoon Government Hospital, Pune-411001, Maharashtra, India.
Introduction: Poor drug compliance affects clinical outcome and increases healthcare costs in various disease setting. Several type II diabetes mellitus patients, not controlled on oral hypoglycaemics eventually require insulin therapy. Antidiabetic treatment is to be taken lifelong and in such a setting insulin price variation imposes a huge economic burden on poor diabetic patients. Moderating drug cost is associated with improved adherence to the medication regimen.
Aim: To study the variation in cost amongst various brands of insulin analogues.
Materials and Methods: This was an observational, cross-sectional study. Data regarding the 116 formulations and cost of 18 types of insulin preparations was collected from sources like Current Index of Medical Specialties (CIMS), National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), Government of India official website (https://nppaimis.nic.in/nppaprice/pharmasahidaamweb.aspx) and compared with its lowest counterpart. The cost ratio and percentage cost variation was analysed and expressed as percentages.
Results: This study showed a noticeable variation in the prices of insulin analogues. The highest percentage of cost variation was found for Insulin (Highly Purified) Zinc-40 IU (135.17%), followed by Insulin (Analogue) Glargine-100 IU (109.31%). The lowest percentage were for: Insulin (Human-Isophane Recombinant)-40 IU (1.40%), and Insulin (Analogue) Aspart- 100 IU (6.26%).
Conclusion: A noticeable variation in cost prices was observed especially in commonly used intermediate acting insulin that help basal glycaemic control. Similarly, the lowest variation was observed with recombinant counterparts as an effect of pre-existing high prices of each. Need for vital medication like insulin at affordable costs has incited national and global efforts to make it cheaper and accessible to maximum beneficiaries.