Lilly announces US launch of Humulin U500 KwikPen – May 2, 2016

Lilly announced late last week that its Humulin U500 KwikPen is now available in US pharmacies, slightly over three months after its approval in January and consistent with the company’s guidance for a launch in early 2Q16. The list price at our local CVS was $295 per pen, compared to $109.20 per pen for the Humulin U100 KwikPen and $115.40 per pen for the Humalog (insulin lispro) U100 KwikPen. Per unit of insulin, the Humulin U500 KwikPen is less expensive than the U100 KwikPen and is less expensive than the Humalog insulin analog as well (as expected). Lilly is offering a savings card program that will enable eligible commercially insured patients to pay as little as $25 per month for the product. This new device should provide a welcome improvement in ease of use compared to the old vial-syringe system for Humulin U500. See our report on the product’s approval for a more in-depth look at the driving forces behind its development and some of its advantages and disadvantages for patients.

-- by Emily Regier and Kelly Close