What are you paying for Eliquis

I've been quite fine on Warfarin for the last 8 years. My EP though is now recommending Eliquis as a "better" option. He says the America Heart Assoc is also now recommending Eliquis over Warfarin. Slight problem: Warfarin is like $10 a month, Eliquis is $500 a month (yes five hundred $). I'm on Medicare and with Part D drug insurance either the premium is outrageous or the co-pay is.

The $500 is for 60 tablets 5 mg. Twice a day for a one month supply. How much is this stuff in Canada, Australia, UK, elsewhere? TIA.


21 Comments

?

by Pacer2019 - 2019-12-21 12:14:09

Have you priced it at multiple pharmacies AND looked at possible GoodRx pricing ? 

?

by mrag - 2019-12-21 12:25:49

yes, of course

 

Canada

by Gotrhythm - 2019-12-21 13:06:40

I take a med that costs $1,864.00 a month--if bought from the local pharmacy. That's the brand name price. For some reason the generic doesn't work for me.

I order the same, brand name drug fron Canada Online Drugs, for $90.00 for a three month supply. Medicare won't pay but who cares? The price is still less than my co-pay for the generic in the US.

Although ordering drugs online can be iffy, there are real legitimate, trust worthy drug stores online. When you read those warnings about buying online, ask yourself, who wrote the article and what they have to gain if you think you can only buy American. If big-pharma had their way it would be against the law for Americans to get drugs from another country.

Other countries don't pay what we do for drugs. Not even close. It is time, and past time, for Americans to stop letting drug companies price-gouge us--just because price-gouging by drug companies is legal in the US.

 

eliquis

by Skeet - 2019-12-21 13:17:38

Good Rx doaen't help much for drugs like eliquis. Cost for me is a little under 500. I pay $47 through part D until I get in doughnut hole, which dosen't take long. Latter third of year I usually cut to one dose instead of two so I can make it to next year. Not a good idea. I also take insulin and found Novolin N & R work for me. $24 a vial instead of $400 saves me thousands a year.

Skeet

warfarin, simvastatin

by mrag - 2019-12-21 13:29:31

I just got refills on the above from my current prescription supplier Humana. The paperwork that comes with the order indicates both drugs are manufactured in CROATIA of all places. I also sometimes take Colchicine. A 30 tablet supply in CVS is around $170. If I use GoodRX, it can be as low as $65. In Canada the cost at the local pharmacy for the same drug is $17! BTW, one has to be careful with GoodRX and tablet vs capsule. The same Colchicine in tablet maybe $65, but the capsule form can cost over $150. You need to be a freakin scientist to afford to live.

But I am very interested in particularly learning about Eliquis.

Prices

by AgentX86 - 2019-12-21 13:43:05

$500/mo is about what it costs.  I looked at Medicare Part-D coverage (plan to retire some time in 2020) and it looked like I could get it for $30mo until the donut hole, which I'd get to in the second quarter.  Then it's $485, IIRC, until I hit the maximum.  I'm on three expensive drugs (Eliquis, Uloric, and Lumigan) plus a whole pile of cheaper ones so the second quarter is going to get, um, interesting.  the bad news is that all of the alternatives (other than Warfarin) are just as expensive. The good news is that the patent has run out on Eliquis so generics may be hitting the market soon.  There are enough people taking it that it'll be profitable for someone else to enter the market.

Cutting dosages of Eliquis is not smart.  Strokes are nothing to trifle with. One of the better outcomes is that it'll kill you.  I can go down from there.  Way down.

It's not the drug companies that are "price gouging"  (though it does cost $1B, that's nine zeros to bring a drug to market).  The US govrnment has set up the drug system to completely screw the patient.  there are so many layers of middlemen that it's unbelievable.  Each one adds their cut.

 

MRAG

by IAN MC - 2019-12-21 16:40:11

You ask how much Eliquis costs in the U.K   Here are the facts :-

Only around 10% of the UK population use private heath care.  90% use our National Health Service ( NHS ) which gives us free healthcare and  is paid for from our taxes.

Under the NHS scheme there is a set charge around  $12  per prescription item so that is what Eliquis would cost for a month's supply , BUT,  and it is a big “ BUT” ...  lots of people get their drugs FREE  ( a word which doesn’t seem to exist in the U.S. healthcare vocabulary  )

If we are aged over 60, under 16, are pregnant, in full time education, on a low income, suffer from cancer, diabetes, epilepsy etc etc  then all drugs, including Eliquis, are FREE !

Now, to the 10% of people who choose private care, they would pay for their drugs……. So how much would they pay for Eliquis ?     Answer :  Around $69 for 60 tabs.

Comparing this to the $500 which you quote makes me realise just how much you are being ripped off in the U.S.  I'm sure it's not just the manufacturer  ( American company, Pfizer ) who is ripping you off, it is , as Agent says, all of the others in your healthcare system who are taking a cut !

Hope some of the replies help you to reduce your bills.

Ian

 

 

 

Yes

by Pacer2019 - 2019-12-21 21:50:59

I guess to complete the math one would have to know - you mentioned it's paid for through your taxes ? So one cannot say they are getting anything for free.

Suggestion

by Pacer2019 - 2019-12-21 21:59:03

I live with someone who is an expert where these matters are concerned .....

her answer is "it depends on your plan" ....she recommends going on Medicare.gov .  There per her you can put in all of your specific medications and determine which plan is your best option as well as pharmacies.  Sounds like a great tool .

 

of course open enrollment ended so you may be stuck for now.  She helps people with this stuff all the time and represents several carriers so it is an important tool. Many pay lots of attention to premium cost but fail to look at other factors - especially if they dont have someone working through this with them or someone who only represents one carrier.

the devil is literally in the details. 
 

last thing ..... this stuff is constantly changing year to year. You can try to keep up but best is to find an expert you trust. 

Doing the math

by mrag - 2019-12-22 12:59:12

I am quite familiar with Medicare.gov. Eliquis in the US basically costs $500 a month. Argue if it is $450 or $550, who cares, it's expensive. Contrary to popular belief, insurance companies are not stupid. They want their $500. They can get it via a high insurance premium and low co-pay or low premium and high co-pay. One can play hop carriers each year to see if you can win-you can't, you're playing against the casino, but if it makes you feel good, fine.

The info on UK pricing/costs is great. I don't yet feel comfortable knowing TRUE Canadian pricing. "According to the FDA, 97% of online pharmacies are illegitimate and unsafe." At $500 there seems to be more incentive to rip you off with a fake than cutting cocaine or god-forbid, that horrible marijuana. If some KNOWS an honest on-line Canadian pharmacy, please DM me.

So far I'm stable and tolerate $10 a month warfarin quite well. Side note, it appears Eliquis will not be available as a generic until 2026! But what's a stroke worth?

Can I visit Niagra Falls and stop in a get a 90 day supply of ELiquis? And at what cost?

Complicated

by AgentX86 - 2019-12-23 11:43:15

Pricing of drugs is a lot more complicated than "the drug companies are ripping us off" and "getting rich off the consumer".

Complicated

by mrag - 2019-12-23 14:43:34

I'm sure drug pricing is a lot more complicated. So is building a rocket capable of carrying a nuclear payload. For fun, just read Wikipedia's article on Colchicine or even look up insulin where the 'inventor' gave away the patent for a $1 and wonder how we got to where we are. (short version, greed and freakin stupidity). Perhaps I missed your point though. I think the original question was cost of Eliquis in Canada vs. US? However, I would not object if people would also like to point out the reasons for any price differences-slimy politicians, windmills, etc.

How much is Eliquis in Canada?

by Gotrhythm - 2019-12-23 16:24:57

I don't take Eliquis myself. But this discussion made me curious.

I just checked. Through CanDrugstore.com you can order Eliquis 5mg 60 tablets for $89.00.

You will not find CanDrugstore.com through GoodRX.com. CanDrugstore.com is a reputable pharmacy, which is actuallly physically located in Toranto, Canada. You will need a prescription that you will have to get from your doctor.

I have ordered from them for over 10 years. 

WARNING. BUYER BEWARE. Online there are many websiteds with similar names claiming to be Canada based. Some are legit. Some aren't. DO NOT BE FOOLED by a similar name. The ONLY one I personally know that can be trusted is CanDrugstore.com.

 

Complicated

by AgentX86 - 2019-12-23 21:00:23

Specifically, the reason drugs are so much cheaper in Canada than they are the US is that Canada doesn't respect US drug patents.  They tell the drug companies, "here's what we're going to pay and if you don't like it, we'll make our own.".  The rest of the world has similar issues (though some are more economic. "This is what we'll pay or we'll go without").  The drug companies have a choice, either get something for the drugs or nothing.  What this does is shift the cost of developing new drugs to the US. 

...and it gets complicated from there.

Complicated and more

by mrag - 2019-12-23 21:53:11

I've been cautioned about avoiding "US politics" which has now essentially voided any possibility of believing any news organization, but for now, countries ignoring drug patents seems to have some credibility. The bottom line is in the US we have a self-inflicted nightmare on drug costs. Eliquis as an example is about $500 PER MONTH! That's an enormous expense for all but the wealthiest. In Canada, the exact same prescription is around $85 a month (I used Costco pricing). I could buy a Lexus or Land Rover for the difference ($415 US). Plain old Insulin must be a horror and God knows for the exotic HIV, cancer, etc drugs.

I remain very skeptical of using "on-line" Canadian drug pharmacies, but that's me. If I'm eventually forced to Eliquis, I will be back and ordering from Canada or moving there (or the UK). Right now that actually seems like a very good move.

 

Does anyone know the numbers? Say 50 people with A-fib and taking Warfarin out of a 1000 have a stroke. How many of the same group would have a stroke taking Eliquis?

Warfarin vs. Eliquis

by AgentX86 - 2019-12-24 12:13:01

These numbers are readily available but I'm using my phone now and it's a pain to do much searching. Strokes are only half of the story. The opposite end of the clotting spectrum is the inability to clot. The opposite of a stroke, and perhaps even more dangerous is a brain bleed. Eliquis is a *lot* better here.

While warfarin can be reversed with vitamin-K, Eliquis can't. There is a reversal agent for Eliquis but it's rather expensive ($50K per dose) and isn't without risks itself. I don't know that it's ever been used in the wild. It's certainly not used be paramedics. Eliquis has a short half-life so it's generally better to tough it out.

Warfarin vs Eliquis ...... only half the story

by IAN MC - 2019-12-24 12:55:20

I  don't want to scare you , mrag, but I used to be involved with clinical trials in the pharmaceutical industry and one thing I always look at in drug-comparison trials is differences in " overall mortality ". between the 2 drugs.

This means the risk of death from ANY cause. There are quite a few comparative analyses which suggest that if you take Eliqus you have around a 30% increased risk of death compared to warfarin whether or not you have a-fib.   Ongoing studies are attempting to find the reasons for this.

I have my own theory that some people drop down dead in the U.S. when they see the price of Eliquis there but I may be wrong !

Seriously if I took  Eliquis I wouldn't lose sleep over these studies but I would discuss them  with your EP.

It may be down to the design of the trials but more comparison work needs to be done.

Ian

Warfarin vs. Eliquis

by AgentX86 - 2019-12-24 14:54:43

<https://myheart.net/articles/eliquis-versus-warfarin-which-is-best/>

Thought this would be of interest

by AgentX86 - 2019-12-24 22:52:44

Perhaps a nice Christmas present. 

<https://www.webmd.com/dvt/news/20191224/fda-approves-first-generic-of-popular-blood-thinner>

Eliquis generic?

by mrag - 2019-12-26 14:44:26

Thanks for the links. Perhaps I spend too much time with "fake news" but I really have to question this announcement. Previously the projected date for a generic Eliquis was like 2026! Now there is one today?

Does it have a name?

Eliquis has like six key patents to make it work, does this generic version have all six?

Has there been testing done to confirm effectiveness?

Just when will it be available to the public?

What will be the cost? Will the insurance companies accept it?

The article quotes: "Today's approvals of the first generics of apixaban are an example of how the FDA's generic drug program improves access to lower-cost, safe and high-quality medicines," Today's FDA, more than ever, really fails to give me a warm and fuzzy feeling about anything that will help me.

 

 

 

Generic Apixaban (Eliquis)

by mrag - 2020-01-07 20:47:35

Another article announcing FDA approval on the generic. So far this seems like more empty political promises-show me the money and the bottle. We still don't have a price or an availability date.

"The FDA granted approval of the generic apixaban applications to Micro Labs Limited and Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc. Please contact the manufacturers for information about the medicine’s availability." Mylan 304-599-2595 while Micro (in INDIA!) +91-80-2237 0451-57

Gee thanks FDA. Full article at: https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/fda-approves-first-generics-eliquis

 

 

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