JDRF Announces Support of Civica to Manufacture and Distribute Low-Cost Insulin

Influential partners in diabetes, advocacy, and healthcare support effort to combat a nationwide insulin affordability crisis and increase accessibility


NEW YORK, March 3, 2022JDRF, the leading global type 1 diabetes (T1D) research and advocacy organization, announces a new collaboration with leading diabetes, advocacy, and healthcare partners to support a newly established insulin-centered project from Civica Inc. (Civica, Civica Rx).

The project will manufacture and distribute three low-cost biosimilar insulin options to enable anyone to purchase insulin at no more than $30/vial and $55/box of five pens, regardless of insurance status. Currently, insulin can cost between $175 and $300 a vial and up to $1,000 a month, and studies show that these inflated costs can cause up to one-quarter of people with insulin-dependent diabetes to skip or ration their insulin, potentially leading to medical emergencies, severe complications, or death.

“The Civica insulin development project is a tremendous step forward to make insulin accessible for all, regardless of insurance status, and address a national crisis,” said Aaron Kowalski, Ph.D., JDRF CEO. “JDRF is firm in its stance that people with insulin-dependent diabetes should not have to choose between food and shelter or life-saving medicine because of its cost. This project will make a real difference for millions of Americans, including those living with type 1 diabetes, and we are proud to support it.”

The project will develop biosimilars to three of the most-prescribed insulins to reach the most Americans: glargine (Lantus®), lispro (Humalog®), and aspart (Novolog®). Once brought to market, these biosimilars will save lives by significantly lowering the cost of insulin for millions of Americans and provide critical cost certainty through its transparent cost-plus model. The insulins will be manufactured at a newly built plant in Petersburg, VA, and the first is anticipated to be available to consumers in 2024.

Civica, a nonprofit generic pharmaceutical company, is partnering with a consortium of supporters, including JDRF, Arnold Ventures, Beyond Type 1, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association and 12 independent BCBS companies, Gary and Mary West Foundation, Glen E. Tullman Fund, Intermountain Healthcare, Kaiser Permanente, Peterson Center on Healthcare, Providence, The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, Transcarent and Trinity Health, to launch this program.

JDRF has been fighting the rising cost of insulin for years, calling for public and private sector solutions and acting as a strong voice for insulin affordability in Washington. For more information about JDRF’s advocacy and stance on insulin affordability and accessibility, visit jdrf.org.

About JDRF

JDRF’s mission is to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent, and treat T1D and its complications. To accomplish this, JDRF has invested more than $2.5 billion in research funding since our inception. We are an organization built on a grassroots model of people connecting in their local communities, collaborating regionally for efficiency and broader fundraising impact, and uniting on a national stage to pool resources, passion, and energy. We collaborate with academic institutions, policymakers, and corporate and industry partners to develop and deliver a pipeline of innovative therapies to people living with T1D. Our staff and volunteers throughout the United States and our five international affiliates are dedicated to advocacy, community engagement, and our vision of a world without T1D. For more information, please visit jdrf.org or follow us on Twitter (@JDRF), Facebook (@myjdrf), and Instagram (@jdrfhq).

About Type 1 Diabetes (T1D)

T1D is a chronic, life-threatening autoimmune disease that can strike children and adults at any age. It requires rigorous 24/7 monitoring of blood glucose levels—even overnight—to avoid potentially lethal highs and lows in blood sugar, as well as other devastating complications like kidney, eye, and nerve diseases. While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved. Its onset is sudden and is not related to diet or lifestyle. In T1D, the body’s immune system destroys cells in the pancreas that produce insulin, meaning the body produces little to no insulin to regulate blood sugar and get energy from food. There is nothing you can do to prevent T1D, and—at present—nothing you can do to get rid of it.

About the Civica Family of Organizations

Civica, Inc. (Civica, Civica Rx) is a nonprofit generic pharmaceutical company. Civica was created by hospital systems and philanthropies in 2018 to reduce and prevent chronic drug shortages in hospitals and the unpredictable price spikes that often accompany them. Its mission is to make quality generic medicines accessible and affordable to everyone.

Today Civica is governed by leading hospital systems (CommonSpirit Health, HCA Healthcare, Intermountain Healthcare, Kaiser Permanente, Mayo Clinic, Memorial Hermann, Providence, SSM Health, and Trinity Health), representatives of the payer community (Blue Cross of Idaho and Blue Cross Blue Shield Association), and philanthropies committed to improving healthcare (Gary and Mary West Foundation, Laura and John Arnold Foundation, and Peterson Center on Healthcare). Hospital advisors—doctors and pharmacists—prioritize the essential medicines Civica provides for use in acute and critical care, emergency rooms, and surgery.

Civica has since launched CivicaScript, focused on lowering prices at the pharmacy counter and The Civica Foundation, dedicated to fostering philanthropic support for manufacturing and distributing essential medicines.