Cost of Buprenorphine Treatment to Patients
The cost of buprenorphine can vary depending on the dose. Cost of a dose of buprenorphine is determined by:
- The pharmaceutical company, brand names and other companies that produce generic buprenorphine
- The health plan
- Retail pharmacies
Daily doses are normally from 8 mg to 24 mg (if using sublingual tablets), (Sullivan & Fiellin, 2008).
Prior-authorization is often required, although this may be decreasing in frequency. Many private clinics accept only cash. For patients who can afford to pay cash, they will have to seek reimbursement through their insurance carriers.
Daily buprenorphine costs $4,000 to $5,000 per year and methadone costs $2,600 to $5,200 (Blueshift, 2017). Cost for the implant form of buprenorphine is $4,000 to $6,000 for six months. These estimates are based on an average dose of 16 mg/day, not including the $100-$200 fee for office-visits. Of course, these rates will vary based on factors such as geographic location and proximity of other providers.
A variety of prescription discounts are available for low-income patients.
- Needy Meds
- Free Drug Card Program
- AAA members can save an average of 20% off the retail price of prescriptions, valid at participating pharmacies.
The generic combination buprenorphine/naloxone tablets may reduce the cost to patients significantly.