Eli Lilly & Co. campaign details insulin cost-saving program

INDIANAPOLIS (Inside INdiana Business) — Having drawn criticism in the past from consumers, advocacy groups and lawmakers over the price of insulin, Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly and Co. is taking a proactive approach to inform the public about cost-saving options.

Chief Executive Officer Dave Ricks penned an open letter Thursday in several major newspapers, encouraging anyone who needs help paying for their monthly prescription of Lilly insulin to call the Lilly Diabetes Solution Center.

“We’ve heard too many stories about people with diabetes who struggle to afford their insulin. That needs to change. You should not have to ration your treatment, and you should not have to choose between insulin and putting food on the table,” Ricks said.

The letter was published in several top national newspapers, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and USA Today.

“We’ve been able to provide solutions for tens of thousands of people who need help,” said Mike Mason, senior vice president of connected care and insulins for Eli Lilly.

Mason says the center helps people find the lowest cost possible, based on personal circumstances such as income level.

But despite efforts by the company to tell people about the program, Mason said many are unaware of the options through its Diabetes Solutions Center.

“People without insurance are particularly vulnerable because they are not in the system at pharmacies. We hope this campaign provides more visibility to the resources available for people,” Mason said.

For people with insurance, Lilly reminds them that many insurance plans reset in January which will mean paying high deductibles.

That out-of-pocket expense can make treatment for diabetes unaffordable.

Lilly says the full-page ad will also appear in Spanish-language newspapers in major cities. The company also says it will launch a “significant” digital advertising campaign that will run through March.

Click here to read the letter from Lilly CEO Dave Ricks.