Apretude (cabotegravir) is a prescription drug used to help prevent HIV. Apretude’s cost may depend on factors such as whether you have health insurance and what you have to pay to receive injections from a healthcare professional.

Apretude is used in adults and certain children as preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to help prevent HIV. A PrEP medication is used only in people who haven’t contracted HIV but are at high risk.

Apretude comes as a long-acting liquid suspension that’s given as an injection into your muscle by a healthcare professional. It contains the active ingredient cabotegravir. An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.

For more details on Apretude, see this in-depth article.

The price you pay for Apretude can vary. It may depend on your treatment plan and your insurance coverage (if you have insurance). It will also depend on how much you have to pay for an office visit with a healthcare professional to receive your Apretude injections.

To find out how much you’ll pay for Apretude, talk with your doctor or insurance provider.

Note: If you have insurance, you may need to get prior authorization before your insurance provider will cover Apretude. This means your insurer and your doctor will discuss Apretude in regard to your treatment. Then the insurance company will determine whether the drug is covered. If Apretude requires prior authorization and you don’t receive it before starting treatment, you could pay the full cost of the drug.

Be sure to ask your insurance company whether Apretude requires prior authorization.

Apretude only comes as a brand-name drug. It’s not currently available in a generic version. A generic drug contains an exact copy of the active drug in a brand-name medication but tends to cost less.

Why is there such a cost difference between brand-name drugs and generics?

Years of research and testing are needed to ensure that brand-name drugs are safe and effective. This testing can make the drugs expensive. The manufacturer of a brand-name drug can sell the drug for up to 20 years. After that, other drugmakers can create generic versions. This competition in the market can lead to lower costs for generics. And because generics have the same active ingredients as brand-name drugs, they don’t need to be studied again. This can also lead to lower generic costs.

If you need help covering the cost of Apretude or understanding your insurance, check out these resources:

On these sites, you can find insurance information, details on drug assistance programs, and links to savings cards and other services.

If you have questions about how to pay for your prescription, talk with your doctor.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about Apretude and cost.

Is Apretude covered by Medicare?

It’s possible. To find out whether your Medicare plan covers the cost of Apretude, call your plan provider. There are many different types of Medicare plans available, and your cost and coverage depend on your individual plan benefits.

Your final cost may also depend on the price to receive Apretude injections at a doctor’s office or clinic.

Keep in mind that your plan may have prior authorization requirements before it will cover Apretude.

You can also ask your doctor about the cost of Apretude if you have Medicare.

How does the cost of Apretude compare with similar drugs, such as Truvada or Descovy?

The cost of Apretude compared to Truvada (emtricitabine/tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) or Descovy (emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) can depend on various factors.

For example, Apretude comes as an injection into your muscle that’s given by a healthcare professional. But Truvada and Descovy are available as tablets you take by mouth. You may have to pay more to receive Apretude injections in your doctor’s office or a clinic.

Other factors that may affect how much you pay include:

  • whether there are any coupon cost savings programs available for the drug you’re prescribed
  • whether you have insurance or are paying out of pocket
  • how long your treatment lasts

If you have questions about the cost of Apretude compared with similar medications, talk with your doctor or insurance provider (if you have insurance). They can share more details on treatment costs based on your individual situation.

If you still have questions about the cost of Apretude, talk with your doctor. They may be able to give you a better idea of what you’ll pay for this drug. But if you have health insurance, you’ll need to talk with your insurance provider to learn the actual cost you’d pay for Apretude treatment.

Examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor or insurance provider include:

  • Would my cost for Apretude be lower if I receive injections at a clinic versus a hospital?
  • Will my insurance cover the full cost of receiving Apretude injections?
  • Are there lower cost options to treat my condition if I can’t afford Apretude?

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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.