We operate in 169 countries with vastly different levels of income and health systems. As a global healthcare company, we know that different approaches are needed to ensure that the most vulnerable people receive the care they need. For this reason, we have put in place a number of initiatives aimed at ensuring that vulnerable groups have access to affordable medicines and care.
Our Access to Insulin Commitment
Through our Access to Insulin Commitment we have set a
ceiling price of USD 4.00 per 10 ml vial of human insulin offered to
governments in 76 low - and middle-income countries and to
In 2019, the average price the insulin was sold at under the
commitment was USD 2.9 per vial, equalling 12 cents per patient per
day.1 An estimated 2.9 million people were treated with insulin under
this commitment in 2019, of which approximately 200,000 people were
reached through sales to humanitarian organisations.
Beyond this commitment, Novo Nordisk sold human insulin at or below
the ceiling price in other countries, reaching an estimated additional
2.2 million people in 2019.
From August 2020, we have set a new ceiling price of USD 3.00 per 10
ml vial of human insulin.
See how we work
with access and affordability.
Affordability in the US
Ensuring affordability of
medicines within the complex US healthcare system continues to be a
high priority. In 2019, we met face-to-face with some of our most
vocal critics in the insulin pricing debate – including patients and
physicians – to improve our understanding of the affordability
challenges that patients are facing.
We are continuing to launch initiatives to help more people with
diabetes access affordable medicine – including those with insurance
and those without – as we continue to support a longer-term, systemic reform.
Our current initiatives in the US include:
- A Cash Card Program, offering that for USD 99, people with
diabetes can get up to three vials or two packs
of FlexPen®/FlexTouch®/PenFill® pens of any combination of Novo
Nordisk Inc. insulins.
- NovoLog® and NovoLog® Mix follow-on
brands made available in vials and pens at a 50 percent list price
reduction from the newly established Novo Nordisk Pharma Inc.
- An immediate, one-time insulin supply option available for
people facing an acute need when more time is needed to identify a
- Our Patient Assistance
Program providing free medicines, including all Novo Nordisk insulin
medications, to eligible patients.
- Our human insulin
availability at Walmart for about USD 25/vial that has been
running for the past 15 years, and recently expanded it to other
national pharmacy chains.
- Our Co-pay Savings Cards helping
to spread the costs of commercially insured patients with high
- Enrolment in our Diabetes Patient
Assistance Program and an offer to receive insulin free of charge
for 90 days for people with diabetes using Novo Nordisk Inc. insulin
who have lost health insurance coverage because of a change in job
status due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Find out more about NovoCare® and our insulin
affordability initiatives in the US.
Changing Diabetes® in Children
Established in 2009,
our Changing Diabetes® in Children programme provides insulin free of
charge to clinics caring for children with type 1 diabetes. The
programme also supports healthcare capacity building in 14 of
the world’s poorest countries.
In 2019, we enrolled 2,819 additional children, and
currently the programme has resulted in:
- 26, 500+ children and adolescents enrolled in the
- 208 clinics established across Bangladesh,
Cambodia, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Guinea,
India, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Myanmar, Senegal, Sudan, Tanzania and
- 1,8+ million vials of insulin (100 units)
donated to programme clinics.
- 15,121 healthcare
professionals receiving diabetes care training.
With the launch of our Defeat Diabetes strategy in 2020, we expanded
the programme to reach 100,000 children by 2030.
Find out more
about Changing Diabetes® in Children.
More than 70.8 million people
have been forced to flee their homes and communities due to
persecution, violence and human rights violations. This is the
highest number since World War II.
We have built on our Access to Insulin Commitment to improve access
to reliable and affordable supplies of insulin to people with diabetes
living in humanitarian crises. We have optimised and adapted
our ordering and production procedures to better serve the needs of
humanitarian organisations. This also includes sharing our knowledge
of handling and distributing cold-chain products as well as
our experience building capacity to improve access to diabetes
care, including supporting the development of education materials on
diabetes prevention and care for a humanitarian context.
Since 2018, we have had a partnership with the International
Committee of the Red Cross , the Danish Red Cross to tackle the
growing need to improve chronic disease treatment. The aim of the
partnership, Partnering for Change, is to ensure the integration of
diabetes and hypertension care into the global health operations of
the Red Cross Partners.
The Partnering for Change was established with a three-year time
horizon (2018-2020), and in May 2020, the partners agreed to extended
with another three-year period to continue in 2021-2023. We work to
strengthen capacity to diagnose and treat people affected by
humanitarian crises through Partnering for Change with the
International Committee of the Red Cross and the Danish Red Cross.
In 2019, we reached approximately 200,000 people through sales to
humanitarian organisation as part of our Access to
Insulin Commitment, guaranteeing ceiling price of USD 4.00 per 10 ml
vial of human insulin.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to challenge relief organisations’
ability to maintain normal operations and uphold their capacity to
provide chronic care to patients. To support them in their efforts, we
are donating and shipping free insulin to organisations, such as
UNICEF, UNRWA and our Red Cross partners, for six months until the end
of September 2020. The total value of the donation is more than DKK 20 million.
To reach other health needs for people living with a rare blood or
endocrine disease, we are providing haemophilia and growth hormone
products to Direct Relief to support people most at risk in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read more about Partnering for Change.
Preventing and treating non-communicable diseases (NCDs)
Rapid changes in demographics and economic growth are causing
a surge in the number of people impacted by non-communicable
diseases, like diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer, in many
of the world’s poorest countries.
Often, non-communicable disease are the result of a combination of
genetic, physiological, environmental and behavioural factors,
including tobacco use, excess alcohol intake, unhealthy diet with high
sugar and salt intake, physical inactivity, and ambient pollution.
In 2018, we entered into a the Defeat-NCD Partnership to support
efforts to both prevent and treat non-communicable diseases in
low-resource countries. The public–private–people partnership is
hosted by the United Nations Institute for Training and Research
(UNITAR) and includes governments, multilateral agencies, civil
society, academia, philanthropic foundations and the private sector.
Defeat-NCDs advocates for universal health coverage for NCDs and is
a direct contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals.
Discover how Defeat-NCDs is making a positive impact
on non-communicable diseases.
Reaching the base of the pyramid
In 2010, we
established the Base of the Pyramid programme to identify innovative
and sustainable solutions to help the working poor living at the
base of the economic pyramid.
The programme is comprised of public–private partnerships
with a model that promotes a shared responsibility between Novo
Nordisk, governments and various local stakeholders.
Through these collaborations, the programme supports an integrated
approach to diagnosis, treatment and control of diabetes that helps
those struggling to cover the cost of treatment and basic necessities
like housing, food and transportation.
The Base of the Pyramid programme has been piloted in Kenya, Ghana
the ‘Effectiveness, scalability, sustainability and shared value in
Our donations to the World
Diabetes Foundation and the Novo Nordisk Haemophilia Foundation are
recognised as an expense when the donation is paid out or when an
unconditional commitment to donate has been made.
In 2019, we donated DKK 86 million to the World Diabetes
Foundation (WDF). The WDF is an independent trust dedicated to
the prevention and treatment of diabetes in developing
countries. In 2019, the WDF provided funding to 12 partnership
projects in 11 countries. The projects focused on awareness, education
and capacity building at local, regional and global levels.
We have donated a total of DKK 1.69 billion (USD 277 million) to
the WDF, to be allocated in the period 2001–2024.
Visit the World Diabetes Foundation website.
In 2019, we donated DKK 19 million to the Novo Nordisk
Haemophilia Foundation (NNHF). The NNHF is a grant-making,
non-profit organisation that strives to improve access to care for
people with haemophilia and allied bleeding disorders in developing
and emerging countries.
NNHF supports programmes in developing and emerging countries with
initiatives focused on capacity building, diagnosis and registry,
education and empowerment. Since 2005, NNHF has provided funding for
284 programmes in 75 countries.
Visit the Novo Nordisk Haemophilia Foundation website.