Tresiba (insulin degludec) is a brand-name drug that’s prescribed for diabetes. The medication is available as a liquid vial and a prefilled injection pen. The cost of Tresiba with and without insurance can depend on several factors.
Tresiba belongs to a drug class called insulins. Tresiba isn’t available in a biosimilar version.
Read on to learn about Tresiba and cost, as well as how to save money on prescriptions. If you’d like other information about Tresiba, refer to this article.
As with all medications, the cost of Tresiba can vary. Factors that may affect the price you’ll pay include:
- your treatment plan
- your insurance coverage
- the pharmacy you use
- whether Tresiba has a savings program (see the “Financial and insurance assistance” section below)
In addition, you may need to purchase needles and syringes to use the vial form of Tresiba.
To find out what the cost of Tresiba 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 Tresiba. This means the company and your doctor will discuss Tresiba in regard to your treatment. The insurance company will then determine whether the medication is covered. 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 Tresiba requires prior authorization.
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about drug cost and Tresiba.
Is there a savings card available for Tresiba?
Yes, there’s a savings card available from the drug’s manufacturer.
For more details and to find out whether you’re eligible, see the “Financial and insurance assistance” section below. You can also talk with your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
Does Medicare cover Tresiba?
It’s possible. If you have Medicare, the amount you’ll pay for Tresiba will depend on your specific Medicare plan. For example, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D plans have different copay costs for brand-name drugs such as Tresiba.
If you have questions about Tresiba’s cost with Medicare, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Tresiba contains the active drug insulin degludec, and it’s available only as a brand-name biologic drug. It doesn’t come in a biosimilar version. A biosimilar medication is a drug that’s similar to a brand-name biologic drug (the parent drug). Also, biosimilars tend to cost less than brand-name medications.
WHY ARE COSTS DIFFERENT FOR BIOLOGIC DRUGS VS. BIOSIMILAR DRUGS?
Biologic drugs can be expensive because of the research needed to test their safety and effectiveness. The manufacturer of a biologic drug can sell it for up to
12 years. When the biologic drug’s patent expires, multiple manufacturers can create biosimilar versions. This marketplace competition may lead to lower costs for biosimilars. Also, because biosimilars are very similar to biologic drugs, they don’t require the same costly testing.
If you take Tresiba 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 Tresiba. 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
Tresiba 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 Tresiba, or if you need help understanding your insurance coverage, help is available. For example:
- A program called Tresiba Savings is available for Tresiba. For more information and to find out whether you’re eligible for support, visit the program website or text “SAVE” to 97430. For more information in Spanish, call 833-992-3301.
- Some websites provide details about drug assistance programs, ways to make the most of your insurance coverage, and links to savings cards and other services. Two such websites are:
To learn more about saving money on prescriptions with or without insurance, check out this article.
Now that you’ve learned about cost and Tresiba, you may still have some questions. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist, who can provide personalized guidance about cost issues related to Tresiba. But if you have health insurance, you’ll need to talk with your insurance provider to learn the actual cost you would pay for Tresiba.
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.
- More details. For details about other aspects of Tresiba, refer to this article.
- Dosage. Learn about Tresiba and dosage by viewing this article.
- Side effects. For details about Tresiba’s side effects, see this article. You can also look at the Tresiba prescribing information.
- Information about diabetes. For more information about diabetes, see our diabetes 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.