Case Study: Expanding Availability of Healthcare Services

Differential Pricing Policy for Least Developed Countries, Novo Nordisk


The cost of medicine and treatment in developing countries can be a significant barrier to better healthcare in low-income countries. This is why Novo Nordisk since 2001 has been offering its insulin products to the public health systems in all the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), as defined by the United Nations, at prices not exceeding 20% of the average price in the industrialised countries of North America, Europe and Japan.

Lessons Learned

While the policy aims to reduce the price of insulin for the patient, there are many other barriers along the distribution chain that increase the cost of insulin. Novo Nordisk works with governments and other organisations to develop solutions for addressing these challenges. For instance, In June 2013 Novo Nordisk participated in a Roundtable on 'Access and affordability of insulin and metformin in sub-Saharan Africa' in Malawi. The Roundtable gathered stakeholders such as representatives from the government of Malawi, the International Diabetes Federation and the local patient association to discuss access to diabetes care.

Results to Date

In 2012, Novo Nordisk offered the differential price to all 49 LDCs with a maximum price of USD 26 cents per patient per day. Novo Nordisk sold insulin to either governments or the private market in 35 countries according to the differential pricing policy and sold insulin at USD 16 cents* per patient per day in average. In 2012, Novo Nordisk reached 340,164 people with diabetes through the differential pricing policy.

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