Geneva — Drug maker Eli Lilly will offer a half-priced version of its blockbuster insulin, becoming one of the first companies to effectively cut the price of a top-selling drug amid the ongoing US debate over pharmaceutical costs. While it will continue selling its brand-name version at the existing price, Lilly will also sell a half-cost “authorised generic” for $137.35 a vial, or $265.20 for a five-pack of injectable pens. That will give a better deal to customers who pay cash, or who are in insurance plans that make them pay a percentage of a drug’s list price. Insurers and pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) do not typically pay the listed prices for drugs, and instead negotiate discounts and rebates that can help lower premiums as a whole, but that can result in large out-of-pocket costs for some patients on costly medicine or who have chronic conditions that force them to take treatments year-round. “The significant rebates we pay on insulins do not directly benefit all patients...

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