Bupropion is a generic drug prescribed for depression in adults. The medication is available as the brand-name drugs Wellbutrin, Aplenzin, and others. The cost of bupropion with and without insurance can depend on several factors.
Bupropion is available in three oral tablet forms:
- immediate release (IR)*
- sustained release (SR)†
- extended release (XL)†
Bupropion is an antidepressant and belongs to a drug class called norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitors.
Read on to learn about bupropion and cost, as well as how to save money on prescriptions. If you’d like more information about bupropion, refer to this article.
* With bupropion IR (typically referred to as “bupropion tablet”), the drug is released immediately into the body after taking a dose. It’s generally taken multiple times per day.
† Bupropion SR and bupropion XL are two different forms of bupropion ER. “ER” stands for extended release, which means the drug is released slowly into the body over time. Bupropion SR is generally taken twice per day and bupropion XL is taken once per day.
As with all medications, the cost of bupropion can vary. Factors that may affect the price you’ll pay include:
- the drug form
- your treatment plan
- your insurance coverage
- the pharmacy you use
To find out what the cost of bupropion will be for you, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Note: If you have insurance, your insurance company may require prior authorization before it covers bupropion. This means the company and your doctor will discuss bupropion in regard to your treatment. The insurance company will then determine whether to cover the medication. If a drug requires prior authorization, but you start treatment without the prior approval, you could pay the full cost of the medication. You can ask your insurance company whether bupropion requires prior authorization.
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about drug cost and bupropion.
How much does bupropion cost without insurance?
The cost of bupropion without insurance can vary based on certain factors. These include:
- the drug form: immediate release (IR), sustained release (SR), or extended release (XL)
- the strength and quantity you’re prescribed, such as a 30- or 90-day supply
- your dosage
- the pharmacy you use
Your pharmacist can help determine what you’d pay for bupropion without insurance. Drug prices can vary between pharmacies, so it may help to compare your prescription costs. You may be able to reduce your costs by getting a 90-day supply of the drug. Talk with your doctor and pharmacist for more information about this. You can also refer to the “Ways to reduce long-term drug costs” section below.
You can check out Optum Perks* for estimates of bupropion’s price when using coupons from the site. (Optum Perks coupons cannot be used with insurance benefits or copays.) You can find coupons by drug form on the following pages:
* Optum Perks is a sister site of Medical News Today.
Does bupropion 300 mg cost more than the drug’s other strengths?
Possibly. The price you’d pay for bupropion 300 milligrams (mg) compared to other strengths* depends on several factors. These include:
- the quantity you’re prescribed, such as a 30- or 90-day supply
- whether you have insurance and your plan benefits, such as your drug copay
- the pharmacy you use
To find out the cost of different bupropion strengths, contact your insurance plan provider, doctor, or pharmacist. For questions about what bupropion form and strength is right for you, contact your doctor.
* Bupropion XL tablet comes in two strengths: 150 mg and 300 mg. To learn about bupropion’s other forms and strengths, refer to this article. You can also talk with your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Bupropion is a generic drug, which means it’s an exact copy of the active drug in a brand-name medication. A generic drug is considered to be as safe and effective as the original drug. And generics tend to cost less than brand-name drugs.
Bupropion is available as the brand-name drugs Aplenzin, Forfivo XL, Wellbutrin SR, and Wellbutrin XL. If your doctor has prescribed bupropion and you’re interested in taking one of these drugs instead, talk with your doctor. They may have a preference for one version or the other. You’ll also need to check with your insurance provider, as it may cover only one or the other.
To find out how the cost of these brand-name drugs compare with the cost of bupropion, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
If you take bupropion long term, you may be able to lower its cost in the following ways.
Getting a 3-month supply
You may be able to get a 90-day supply of bupropion. If approved by your insurance company, getting a 90-day supply of the drug could reduce your number of trips to the pharmacy and help lower the cost. If you’re interested in this option, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Using a mail-order pharmacy
Bupropion may be available through a mail-order pharmacy. Using this type of service may help lower the drug’s cost and allow you to receive your medication without leaving home. Some Medicare plans may help cover the cost of mail-order medications. You may also be able to get a 90-day supply of the drug via mail order.
If you don’t have health insurance, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They may be able to suggest online pharmacy options that could work for you.
If you need financial support to pay for bupropion, consider looking into websites that offer cost resources and information. Two such organizations are:
These sites can provide details about drug assistance programs, ways to make the most of your insurance coverage, and links to savings cards and other services.
Now that you’ve learned about cost and bupropion, you may still have some questions. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist, who can provide personalized guidance about cost issues related to bupropion. But if you have health insurance, you’ll need to talk with your insurance provider to learn the actual cost you’d pay for bupropion.
Here are some other resources you may find helpful:
- Medicare drug coverage. To learn about Medicare coverage for drugs, see these articles about Medicare prescription drug plans, drug coupons and Medicare, and the Medicare drug list.
- Save money. Explore this article for tips about how to save money on prescriptions.
- More details. For details about other aspects of bupropion, refer to this article.
- Information about your condition. For more information about your condition, see our depression hub.
Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.