Here are 5 Real Ways to Save on Invokana, the Diabetes Drug

Here’s all the information you need to make your Invokana prescription affordable.

How popular is Invokana?

Approved in 2013, Invokana is one of the most popular SGLT2 inhibitors, a class of drugs that is used to treat diabetes type 2 by blocking the kidneys from reabsorbing glucose so any excess is excreted from the body. Dosing for Invokana begins as a 100 mg tablet taken once daily before breakfast, but can be increased to 300 mg once a day for those with normal kidney function.

As of June 2018, the cash price of Invokana is over $550 for 30 tablets. GoodRx discounts can help reduce this price a bit (to about $460), but that’s still way too much for most people.

When will generic Invokana be available?

Unfortunately, there is no generic Invokana available, and we won’t see one for some years. The patents that prohibit generic alternatives of Invokana from being manufactured don’t expire until July 2024, so we will most likely have to wait another six years to see a more affordable version of Invokana.

While a generic alternative is still many years out, there are other ways to save on Invokana.

Savings Tip #1: Ask your doctor to submit an insurance appeal

The best way to save on brand-name drugs is typically by using your insurance, but sometimes that doesn’t work because of high-deductibles or plans dropping certain drugs off of their formulary. If you have insurance and your plan doesn’t cover Invokana, ask your doctor about submitting an appeal. The exact process will depend on your insurer, but often requires that you work with your doctor to submit an application or letter of appeal. If you have insurance, call your provider and ask how to get this process started.

Savings Tip #2: Save as much as $3000 with the Invokana copay card

You may be able to use a manufacturer coupon for Invokana to save on your out-of-pocket costs. With the Janssen CarePath Savings program, your copay can be reduced to as little as $0 with a maximum annual savings of $3000. Keep in mind that this program is for commercially insured patients only, and those with Medicare, Medicaid or other government-funded programs will not qualify. Apply for a card here, and bring it to your pharmacist to save.

Savings Tip #3: Apply for a patient assistance program

In addition to coupons, manufacturers also typically offer patient assistance programs for expensive brand-name drugs like Invokana. The Johnson and Johnson Patient Assistance Foundation helps patients without insurance and limited incomes access Invokana for free. Eligible patients can apply here, and you will need a valid prescription and proof of household income.

Savings Tip #4: Speak to your doctor about prescription workarounds

If none of the above options work for you, speak with your doctor about ways to save. Your doctor may talk to you about getting a prescription for a higher-dose pill (which you can cut in half to save on cost), filling a 90-day supply (which can be cheaper than a 30-day supply), or getting free samples.

Savings Tip #5: Ask your doctor about alternatives to Invokana

For those without insurance, or whose insurers removed the drug from their formulary list, Invokana can be too expensive. Here are some alternatives that you may want to talk to your doctor about.

Multiple brand-name drugs are on the market that are similar to Invokana. Just like Invokana, Farxiga and Januvia are two SGLT2 inhibitors used to control blood sugar in those with type 2 diabetes. Both of these have been shown to lower A1C levels by as much as 1%, but they are expensive. If you notice that your insurer covers Farxiga or Januvia over Invokana, you might want to talk to your doctor about switching.

Another option is metformin, which has been approved for stand-alone therapy or in combination with Invokana. Since metformin is first-line treatment for type 2 diabetes, it is likely that you have already tried or are currently taking this medication — but if not, it’s worth a try.

Source: Read Full Article