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CostHelper > Health & Personal Care  > Medical Specialties & Departments > Albuterol Inhaler

Albuterol Inhaler Cost


How Much Does an Albuterol Inhaler Cost?

 
low costWith Insurance: $5-$50average costWithout Insurance: $30-$60high costIn a Nebulizer: $200-$300
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Albuterol is a medication used to treat wheezing and other breathing difficulties among people with chronic lung conditions, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The drug can also be used to prevent shortness of breath and wheezing during exercise. Brand names include Accuneb, Ventolin HFA, ProAir HFA and Proventil HFA. The generic drug is known as Salbutamol.

Typical costs:

  • Patients without insurance can expect to pay between $30 and $60 for their albuterol and the inhaler. The cost varies depending upon the dosage and brand of medication. Those with insurance will pay typical copays and coinsurance rates, which can range from $5 for the generic version to $50 for a brand name.
  • A refill will include both the albuterol and the inhaler device, so the cost will be the same as the original prescription.
  • Physicians will prescribe albuterol treatments through a nebulizer machine for some patients, including children under age four and those with severe asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Without insurance, nebulizers typically cost $200 to $300. Some hospitals, urgent care clinics and pharmacies will allow patients to rent a nebulizer. Cost for rental will vary.
  • Generic albuterol nebulizer solutions cost about $.40 for 10 doses and brand name versions can cost up to $12.10 for 10 doses, according to an analysis of national average sales prices by the Office of the Inspector General in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Patients with insurance will pay typical copays and coinsurance rates.
Related articles: Allergy Testing, Allergy Shots

What should be included:
  • Each prescription will include an inhaler, which is a plastic device that propels the medication down into the lungs. Most inhalers include about 200 metered doses. The University of Illinois provides information on proper inhaler use[1] .
  • Some prescriptions require that a nebulizer be used. Nebulizers are machines that mix air with the medication, creating a fine mist that is easily breathed deep into the lungs. Nebulizers often come with a mask or mouthpiece, a cup to hold the medication and tubing through which the air flows. Treatments with a nebulizer can take between 5 and 15 minutes, depending upon the medication and the dose. Nebulizer solutions should include a dosage tool to determine how much medication to place in the nebulizer cup.
  • In 2008, pharmaceutical companies were required to switch from inhalers using a chemical called chloroflourocarbon as a propellant to a more environmentally friendly propellant called hydrofluoroalkane. Inhalers using the new propellant may taste different and the spray of medication may not seem as strong. This is normal and does not mean that less medication is dispensed.
Additional costs:
  • A peak flow meter, which measures how fast a patient can push air out of their lungs, is often needed to determine the appropriate albuterol dose. Most physicians recommend that patients take their peak flow before each use of the medication. Peak flow meters typically cost $20 to $70 at a drugstore or pharmacy. If a physician recommends that the patient use a peak flow meter prior to each dose, the device should be purchased before any medication is taken.
Discounts:
  • The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America[2] can provide assistance for people having difficulty affording their albuterol inhalers and nebulizers.
  • Prescription assistance for low-income individuals and families may also be available at your local health department.
  • National prescription assistance programs for low-income families include the Partnership for Prescription Assistance[3] and the Together RX Access Program. These programs will require that patients prove their income. Participation requirements vary.
  • For patients over age 55, the National Council on Aging provides a program called Benefits Checkup[4] to help people find the services they need, including prescription drug coverage.
Shopping for an albuterol inhaler:
  • Patients or guardians of patients with chronic respiratory illnesses should begin by consulting their physician regarding treatment options. Albuterol is a medication commonly prescribed to treat asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder. It is not usually necessary to see a specialist.
  • If a visit to a specialist is necessary, ask the patient's primary care physician for a referral.
  • Make sure that the prescribing physician knows about any other medications the patient might be taking or any drug allergies. Also be sure to tell the doctor if the patient is pregnant. These factors may make the physician consider another form of treatment.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
 
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments

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albuterol sulfate for use w/ nebulizer
Amount: $40.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Mr. D in Reno, NV.Posted: February 5th, 2018 05:02PM
Dosage: 2.5 mg x 3 per dayBrand: Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corp
Insurance: Express Scripps
The insurance company won't cover so i pay the cash price at the clinic. I get the poor man rate as i only get Social security and make just over the limit to get Medicaid..
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Ventolin
Amount: $0.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Leann M Hamilton in Daytona Beach, FL.Posted: February 2nd, 2018 10:02AM
Insurance: No insurance
This is going to be how I die. I don't know how anyone can sleep at night knowing that they are way too expensive on a drug that's keeping me alive. They need to bring back primatene mist
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ventolin
Amount: $62.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: a user in big bear city, CA.Posted: January 25th, 2018 02:01PM
Dosage: 2 puffs eve 6 hrsBrand: ventolin hfa
too expensive, about 85 cents a puff!
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ProAir for my 6 year old
Amount: $60.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: GLADYSO in Oklahoma City, OK.Posted: October 21st, 2017 07:10PM
Insurance: Cigna
My son uses the ProAir he needs two one for school and another for the house. My husband already pays 1200 a month for health insurance I don't see why we pay extra for my child to breath. Need help please
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Nebulizer cost
Amount: $5,000.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Ray Sheely, RRT in China, ME.Posted: September 24th, 2017 10:09AM
Insurance: None
Buy nebulizers at Walgreens. Inhalers should be used with a spacer. Most inhalers
are used incorrectly and therefore not as effective as nebulizer. However inhalers are portable and can save lives when speed of use is life-saving.
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Ventolin/Albuterol inhaler
Amount: $67.53 not covered by insurance
Posted by: vineyridge in Clarksdale, MS.Posted: March 25th, 2017 07:03PM
Dosage: 200 puff inhalerBrand: Ventolin
Insurance: Humana-Walmart Medicare Part D
If purchased at WalMart on March 24th, 2017, the co-pay would have been 67.53; if ordered from the Humana Mail Order Pharmacy, the cost would have been $50.
I could not afford it.
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Proventil
Amount: $89.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: King2 in Decatur, IL.Posted: November 21st, 2016 11:11AM
Insurance: Medicaid
Absolutely ridiculous that no one will cover these inhalers !! I have used proventil for years . Pro air does not work , ventolin also does not work . Even my doctor said some people can't use the others , but yet the insurance companies refuse to cover this brand??
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Albuteral
Amount: $45.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Barbara Fisher in Grand Rapids, MI.Posted: November 18th, 2016 09:11PM
Insurance: Prioritiy Heath
I need help paying
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Albuterol inhaler
Amount: $54.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Ivey in Shelby, NC.Posted: October 6th, 2016 11:10PM
Insurance: 4 dollaars
Why don't bcbs cover this for the price 10 to 20 dollars.I took my prescription to Walmart I was told by Dr it would only be 4 dollars.Purpose of insurance was to help pay can this be explained?
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Standard ProAir Refill
Amount: $54.21 not covered by insurance
Posted by: a user in Cincinnati, OH.Posted: August 24th, 2016 06:08PM
Insurance: Blue Cross Blue Sheild
My inhaler used to cost $4, then went up to $24 2 months ago and now it's $54. At this point I feel like I don't have insurance! BCBS is horrible!
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Proair
Amount: $114.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Jeanine in El Cajon, CA.Posted: May 7th, 2016 04:05AM
Insurance: None
This the price at both CVS and Walgreens in El Cajon California.
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Albuterol Inhaler
Amount: $64.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: a user in lousiville, MS.Posted: April 15th, 2016 05:04PM
Dosage: 1Brand:
Insurance: humana
did not get it could not afford guess i will die not getting my air. humana pays .80cent big deal
went up on insurance thirty dollars this year and does not cover half of what they use to
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Ventolin/Albuterol 204 puff
Amount: $51.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Heather Dee in Blakeslee, PA.Posted: April 1st, 2016 06:04PM
Insurance: Geisinger TPA
Was prescribed an inhaler to help with my acute bronchitis. After I saw the price, I was determined to get over this illness quickly and use the inhaler as sparingly as possible.
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Proventil HFA
Amount: $68.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: pooka47401 in Bloomington, IN.Posted: February 15th, 2016 02:02PM
Dosage: NormalBrand: Merek
Insurance: Indiana University Medicare
All I ask for is coverage for Proventil. ProAir is a coarser powder and the inhaler gets clogged every time it is used. That was 2015 that I had $68 copay but now just got a letter from SilverScript (Medicare pt D) that they will not cover Proventil. They said that they covered it two months ago, when they wanted me to sign up. Now, after I can't switch providers, they gave the 60 day notice that they won't cover it.
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Albuterol inhaler
Amount: $70.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Donnee in Chattanooga, TN.Posted: November 28th, 2015 07:11AM
Insurance: Blue Cross
This was my cost AFTER insurance. Only bought it because I had pneumonia. I pay substantial monthly premiums and my inhaler is $70.00 and my co payments on my antibiotic is $10.00? I will NEVER buy another inhaler.
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albuterol inhaler
Amount: $40.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: aleida saldana in visalia, CA.Posted: August 31st, 2015 07:08PM
Insurance: dont have one
I really need an inhaler right now but Idont have insurance so I don't where to get one
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ProAir HFA
Amount: $53.09 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Laura W. in Grand Junction, CO.Posted: August 21st, 2015 02:08PM
Dosage: 90mcgBrand: ProAir
Insurance: Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield
Had to get new inhaler(s) with all the smoke in our Valley from California fires (many States away). The last time I refilled this prescription was 2010 and they cost me around $8 each. Now it's close to $55 a piece? Yep, I got only 1 inhaler this trip! I usually have one in the bathroom, one in my purse, and one in my car. Not spending over $150 for inhalers I use only as needed. What a rip off!!Like another poster, it seems we spend and spend and spend and never get to the place where we've met our minimums every year. The one year we met our minimum was when my husband needed an emergency appendectomy. Since then, all we do is hand over $800 or more per month in premiums for what??? Insurance is through his work, and this was really the best plan they offered; too bad it's a crappy plan. :(
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Albuterol Inhaler
Amount: $55.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Robert Wells in Nacogdoches, TX.Posted: August 8th, 2015 10:08AM
Dosage: 90 mcgBrand: Ventolin HFA
Insurance: None
Searching for cheaper options....This was purchased at Walmart.
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Ventolin Enhaler
Amount: $50.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Roger Pich in Salinas, CA., CA.Posted: July 25th, 2015 05:07PM
Dosage: 200Brand:
Insurance: Blue Cross/TriCare West
I have double insurance coverage, one in for retired military. Neither of them assist in paying for my enhaler. Get used to it folks, it all boils down to the almighty $. Because the lobbyist, lobby against enhalers, there ruining the planet and the O Zone. The pharmacy companies took this opprotunity to jack up the $ for enhalers. You can thank them both for the high prices, its all about greed and $. In the mean time the majority of us get screwed.
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Proventil HFA 200 puffs 6.7gm
Amount: $66.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Joefj in Haddon Twp., NJ.Posted: July 14th, 2015 04:07PM
Dosage: 6.7Brand: Proventil HFA
Insurance: Horizon BC/BS
I have been using an inhaler for over 30 years and paid as much as $120.00 with no insurance to $20.00 dollars with insurance. but my resent purchase was today at WalGreens and with insurance I paid $66.00 that's the cost of breathing.
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ProAir HFA
Amount: $58.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Velda in San Bruno, CA.Posted: July 13th, 2015 09:07PM
Dosage: 200 meteredBrand: ProAir HFA
Insurance: Medicare
I am low income, and my ProAir HFA costs me $58 for a 200 metered dose. I found that, with the 200 metered doses, it does not run true - had to take my inhaler in after 21 doses and at $58 you bet I took it back, I wonder why they discontinued Primatene Mist - it was my life saver.
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Albuterol inhaler
Amount: $50.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: E Zajo in Delray beach, FL.Posted: June 3rd, 2015 04:06PM
Dosage: 300mcgBrand: Proair
Insurance: Bc/bs
Ordered generic albuterol inhalers fron Canada for $42.
Thet is 3 inhalers for $42 without insurance.
Consider this as a possibility.
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how or where to go for a cheaper inhaler
Amount: $283.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Danielle ziegler in Bellingham, WA.Posted: March 14th, 2015 07:03PM
Insurance: blue cross blue sheild
How can I get an inhaler for a cheaper price a different pharmacy or do I need to try to get better medical. I know better medical will help but I regularly see doctors and hospital visits I have bronchitis and I don't have 300 dollars I can spend for just one thing like an inhaler. I have a referral from my doctor. Any suggestions would be great
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Louisiana Medicaid/ Americaretas?
Amount: $0.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: Nicole Hill in Shreveport, LA.Posted: January 17th, 2015 11:01PM
Insurance: State Medicaid Program
My son had pneumonia, was hospitalized for four days. On tfourth day, we were given a nebulizer machine, explained use and equipment from a rep. Doctor sent us home with albuterol solution, saline solution, steroids, and one last med ALL totaling $0. I cried,and said Thank yall so much. Best news to hear beside we were going home, and my son was getting healthier, quicker.
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Ventolin
Amount: $52.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: ALEKSANDR KIRIYENKO in North Port, FL.Posted: January 7th, 2015 08:01AM
Dosage: two puffs every 6 hours as neededBrand: ventolin
Insurance: medicare,medicaid
not cover by insurance. don"t understand why?
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Cost
Amount: $70.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: MollyMSRN in BIloxi, MS.Posted: November 21st, 2014 12:11PM
Dosage: Brand: Proventil AER HFA
Insurance: Humana
this was my price with Caremark mail in via my insurance plan. 3 month supply $70.00 after my $150 deductible was met
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VENTOLIN HFA AER GLAX
Amount: $49.00 not covered by insurance
Posted by: MARYKWIL in WOODVILLE, MS.Posted: June 30th, 2014 09:06PM
Dosage: 2 PUFFS EVERY 4 HOURSBrand: ALBUTEROL SULFATE INHAL AERO
Insurance: NONE
I need to use this to help with my asthma
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External Resources:
  1.  www.mckinley.illinois.edu/handouts/inhaler_use/inhaler_use.html
  2.  www.aafa.org/
  3.  www.pparx.org
  4.  /www.benefitscheckup.org/
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