Is Viagra Covered by Insurance?

While it might seem tempting to track down the drug through other means than your healthcare professional, you might be surprised by the answer to the question, “Is Viagra covered by insurance? 

Share This Post

The late 90s saw the introduction of a medication that would not only change the lives of millions of men around the world, it also became a fixture in popular culture as the “little blue pill.”

Viagra was first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1998, and since then, it has become America’s most popular erectile dysfunction (male impotence) drug.

Since its release over 20 years ago, Viagra has become a major player in the world of pharmaceuticals, with over 25 million prescriptions written.

Erectile dysfunction is a relatively common, but embarrassing, condition affecting more than 30 million men in the United States alone, many of whom do not seek treatment due to shame or concerns about cost.

While it might seem tempting to track down the drug through other means than your healthcare professional, you might be surprised by the answer to the question, “Is Viagra covered by insurance? 

What Is Viagra?

Viagra is an erectile dysfunction drug that belongs to a family of medications called PDE-5 inhibitors.

Viagra was introduced in 1998 and was sold exclusively under its brand name until December 2017, when a generic form of the medication, called sildenafil citrate, was released.

Because Viagra was only sold under the brand name version of the medication for so many years, many people believe that the medication is prohibitively expensive and is not covered by insurance.

However, the release of the generic drug has helped change the availability.

 Viagra is available in 25 mg, 50 mg, and 100 mg strengths, while sildenafil is sold in dosages of 20 mg, 40 mg, 60 mg, 80 mg, and 100 mg.

There are also other medications like Cialis, Levitra, Revatio, Tadalafil, and Vardenafil that treat ED. 

YouTube player

What Is Erectile Dysfunction and What Causes It?

There are many misconceptions about erectile dysfunction, and the shame associated with the condition often prevents men and women from learning more about what causes it.

Erectile dysfunction, or male impotence, is a form of sexual dysfunction associated with difficulty getting and/or keeping an erection in the penis due to limited blood flow and low blood pressure to the penis and decreased sexual stimulation or sexual activity.

Researchers recognize that the body needs three things to have an erection: good blood flow, a functioning brain, and adequate hormone levels.

That means that there can be many different causes of erectile dysfunction, including physical causes, lifestyle causes, psychological causes, or a combination of all of the above, which is one of the reasons that erectile dysfunction is so difficult to treat. 

The most common physical causes of erectile dysfunction are atherosclerosis (clogged arteries), diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity. Alcohol abuse, illegal drug use, smoking, common side effects of other prescription medications (including those used to high blood pressure, heart conditions or heart disease, and depression), and side effects of over-the-counter medications such as antihistamines and Sudafed are the most common lifestyle causes of erectile dysfunction.

Psychological causes of erectile dysfunction include depression, stress, and anxiety. 

Fortunately, there is a lot that men can do to help prevent or reverse erectile dysfunction. Simple lifestyle issues can be changed to improve your health, for example:

  • Drinking less alcohol
  • Quitting smoking
  • Reducing stress in your daily life
  • Increasing your exercise
  • Managing your weight 

How Does Viagra Work?

PDE-5 inhibitors like Viagra work by inhibiting a natural chemical (PDE-5) that causes blood to flow out of an erect penis.

However, PDE-5 isn’t the only thing that determines the length of an erection.

Your heart, blood vessels, hormones, nerves, and mood all work together to cause an erection, which means that issues with any of these areas can cause erectile dysfunction.

When an erection occurs, a chemical called cGMP causes the tissues and muscles in the penis to relax, allowing blood to flow in.

The blood volume can be up to eight times the amount that is in a flaccid penis.

The blood gets trapped, and under normal circumstances, eventually released, allowing the erection to subside and blood flow to return to normal.

PDE-5 is a chemical that causes the breakdown of cGMP, and Viagra works by blocking it.

When the active ingredient in Viagra is used to inhibit PDE-5, the cGMP does not get broken down and the tissues in the penis stay relaxed and engorged with blood, allowing you to keep an erection. 

Can I Buy Viagra Over the Counter?

Hoping to skip the urologist’s office and pick up some Viagra at the local pharmacy? Unfortunately, that’s not possible.

Viagra is not available over the counter because the medication may not be safe for men with certain medical conditions or those who take certain medications, including medications called nitrates, which are often prescribed for chest pain, or guanylate cyclase stimulators such as Adempas (riociuguat) for pulmonary arterial hypertension.

Interactions between Viagra and these medications or medical conditions can cause a serious and potentially unsafe drop in blood pressure or blood flow, among other serious side effects.

Although rare, serious side effects including heart attack, stroke, irregular heartbeat, heart disease, high blood pressure, and death have occurred in men taking Viagra, so it is critical that patients communicate with their doctors regarding their medical history.  Although many patients experiencing these side effects had a history of cardiac health issues, not all patients had a prior history.

It is still unknown whether Viagra can cause or contribute to the possibility of experiencing cardiac issues.

Due to the potential for dangerous and more serious side effects in patients taking certain medications or with certain medical conditions, Viagra cannot be purchased over the counter.

Is Viagra Available Without a Prescription?

If you’re in the United States and you see Viagra being advertised as available without a prescription, run in the opposite direction.

Viagra is not legally available in the United States without a prescription, but a system does exist in the United Kingdom for approval of certain patients without a doctor’s visit.

Under this system, patients with a suitable medical and sexual health history may purchase Viagra with the approval of a pharmacy staff member or healthcare provider.

However, the option is limited to certain pharmacies and is not widely available. For the most part, Viagra that is advertised as available without a prescription is counterfeit and being sold illegally.  

Can I Purchase Viagra Online?

You might come across websites offering Viagra for sale, but make sure you do your research prior to purchasing. Viagra is one of the most frequently counterfeited drugs in the world because of its popularity, formulary, cost, and the stigma surrounding erectile dysfunction.

The original manufacturer of the medication, Pfizer, actually created a task force to stop counterfeiters when studies showed that up to 80 percent of Viagra and its generic form, sildenafil, sold online is counterfeit. In addition to being ineffective, counterfeit drugs sold online can also be dangerous because ingredients like rat poison, methamphetamines, printer ink, and more often make their way into the product.

However, there are some licensed and accredited online pharmacies that do sell Viagra legally over the internet, but you will still need a prescription.

If you want to avoid visiting a doctor’s office, you will need to work with an online pharmacy that employs doctors who will be able to prescribe the medication if you have not already obtained a prescription.

Some online pharmacies offer the option to consult with a doctor online without a face to face discussion. In these cases, you’ll need to fill out a questionnaire and possibly answer some follow up questions. Remember, if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is!

Where Can Viagra Be Purchased Online?

If you’re committed to purchasing Viagra online, make sure you do your research first and find out the cost of the medication through a brick and mortar pharmacy.

This way, you’ll know the approximate cost of the medication and know when an offer is too good to be true, making it likely counterfeit.

Cost should never be your number one concern when ordering Viagra due to the rampant counterfeiting that goes on with the drug. Unfortunately, finding an online pharmacy that is reputable can be tricky.

The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) gives a rating of “not recommended” to 97 percent of the websites currently selling prescription drugs because they do not meet the criteria for online pharmacies.

The NABP operates a website that allows you to check and see if your online pharmacy is legitimate and safe or not, so checking the URL there before you buy is a must-do.

BrandMedicationRatingBuy Now
TOP RATED
Sildenafil or Viagra | Hims

Sildenafil or Viagra | Hims

$3/pill. Get Prescribed ED Meds from your couch in less than 15 minutes and delivered in a few days

  • ED Medication Available: Sildenafil, Viagra, Cialis, Tadalafil, Stendra
  • Time to Checkout on site: Less than 15 minutes
  • Discreet and Fast shipping: Arrives in a couple of business days
  • Celebrity Endorsements: Alex Rodriguez, Rob Gronkowski
  • Time Saved by Telehealth Visit vs. Average traditional Doctor: 24 days and 21 minutes
9.5
Buy NowRead Review
$2/Sample Pack
Sildenafil or Viagra | Rex MD

Sildenafil or Viagra | Rex MD

$2/pill via sample pack. Get Prescribed ED Meds from your couch in less than 18 minutes and delivered in a few days

  • ED Medication Available: Sildenafil, Viagra, Cialis, Tadalafil, Stendra
  • Time to Checkout on site: Less than 18 minutes
  • Discreet and Fast shipping: Arrives in a couple of business days
  • Time Saved by Telehealth Visit vs. Average traditional Doctor: 24 days and 21 minutes
9
Buy NowRead Review
$20 Discount
Sildenafil or Tadalafil Chews | BlueChew

Sildenafil or Tadalafil Chews | BlueChew

$3/pill. Get Prescribed ED Meds from your couch in less than 15 minutes and delivered in a few days

  • ED Medication Available: Sildenafil, Tadalafil
  • Time to Checkout on site: Less than 15 minutes
  • Discreet and Fast shipping: Arrives in a few of business days
  • Time Saved by Telehealth Visit vs. Average traditional Doctor: 24 days and 21 minutes
8.8
Buy NowRead Review
Sildenafil or Viagra | Roman

Sildenafil or Viagra | Roman

$3/pill. Get Prescribed ED Meds from your couch in less than 15 minutes and delivered in a few days

  • ED Medication Available: Sildenafil, Tadalafil, Stendra,
  • Time to Checkout on site: Less than 21 minutes
  • Discreet and Fast shipping: Arrives in a few of business days
  • Time Saved by Telehealth Visit vs. Average traditional Doctor: 24 days and 21 minutes
8.8
Buy Now
If you buy something from a link on our site, we may earn a commission. See our advertising disclosure.

Is Viagra Covered by Health Insurance?

Viagra, in its brand name form, is not covered on insurance plans from most insurance companies.

However, since the release of the generic version of the drug, sildenafil, in 2017, the majority of Medicare coverage and health plans now offer insurance coverage for it under their prescription drug coverage.

While many people assume that insurance will provide the lowest price for your medication through your copayment, that’s not always the case.

There are many other ways to save money on your Viagra prescription and other drug costs, including checking the cash price, looking for coupons, researching patient assistance programs, or using a pharmacy discount card, as you may find the medication for even less. 

How Can I Save Money on My Prescription?

With or without insurance, there are many different ways to save money on your Viagra prescription.

The release of the generic version of the drug in December 2017 resulted in a major drop in price for both the brand-name drug and generic Viagra. When only the brand name version of Viagra was available, the cost per pill was approximately 60 dollars, putting it out of the reach of many men who needed it.

The launch of sildenafil immediately cut the price of the drug in half, and as more manufacturers have begun producing sildenafil, prices have dropped as low as four dollars per pill.

Purchasing the generic form of Viagra can save you about 90 percent of the cost of your medication on most drug plans. Prices are subject to fluctuation based on supply and demand and occasional stock shortages.

The table reflects cash prices, which are not valid when combined with coinsurance. Additional discounts may be offered for ED drugs purchased as a 90-day supply; however, this option is not available for all medication dosages.

Are Coupons and Rebates Available for Viagra?

While purchasing the generic form of medication can save you big bucks on the cash price of the drug, coupons, and rebates usually do not apply to the generic medication.

However, it is sometimes possible to find coupons or reduced copays on the brand name form of the medication from the manufacturer; in this case, you might find coupons for Viagra from Pfizer.

Ask your doctor if they are aware of any existing discounts or coupon codes that may be available, as sometimes these offers are extended upon receipt of a sample from your doctor’s office.

If they don’t know of any available offers or promotions, try searching online. Some offers are available directly from a website and can be easily printed off, while others may require registering online and activating a coupon card or completing a questionnaire.

For Viagra specifically, you’ll want to visit the medication’s official website to check and see if any assistance is available. 

Patient Assistance Programs

Low income, uninsured, or under-insured individuals may receive help paying for their medications in the form of patient assistance programs.

In order to be eligible for the programs, patients must meet a certain set of criteria, which may include limits on the type of insurance held, the amount of income earned each year, and the underlying health condition being treated by the medication.

In many cases, individuals who are covered by Medicare plans and/or Medicaid services are not eligible for these programs.

Patient assistance programs have varying criteria and may or may not allow coverage by a commercial insurance firm.

Patient assistance programs can be available for a specific period of time (such as six months), for the life of the prescription, for new prescriptions only, or for patients taking the medication on a long-term basis. It is recommended to check the manufacturer’s website to search for patient assistance programs prior to visiting your pharmacy.

References, Studies and Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erectile_dysfunction

https://www.drugs.com/viagra.html

Sesame Care

Find the best price for great doctors and specialists

  • Thousands of doctors and specialists
  • $13,000,000+ saved by patients
  • 95% patient satisfaction
  • 4.3 on TrustPilot
     

Popular Destinations

Health

Medication

Telehealth Reviews

Shop

Pharmacist Membership

About Us

Pharmacy Near Me

Recent Articles

Minoxidil

Minoxidil is a vasodilator that relaxes (widens) blood vessels and improves blood flow.

Minoxidil is used to treat severely high blood pressure (hypertension) that is causing symptoms or damaging your vital organs. Minoxidil is usually given together with two other medicines to help prevent serious side effects.

Minoxidil tablets should not be used to promote scalp hair growth. Only the topical form of minoxidil (Rogaine) is recommended for that use.

Read More »

Cialis

Cialis relaxes muscles of the blood vessels and increases blood flow to particular areas of the body.

Cialis is used to treat erectile dysfunction (impotence) and symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy (enlarged prostate).

Another brand of tadalafil is Adcirca, which is used to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension and improve exercise capacity in men and women. Do not take Cialis while also taking Adcirca, unless your doctor tells you to.

Read More »

Share On:

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Get updates and learn from the best

More To Explore

How Much Does Cialis Cost?

In this article, we will explore the history and facts of Cialis and breakdown how much does Cialis cost. 

Hims ED Review: Does it Actually Work?

We’ve compiled a comprehensive Hims review that will tell you everything you need to know about the company, your treatment options, FAQs about Hims

Hims vs Roman: Complete Review

We’ve put together a complete review of Hims vs. Roman to help you choose the telehealth service that’s right for you. 

BlueChew vs Hims: Which ED Pill is Better?

Both BlueChew and Hims can help you save on your ED pills, but comparing the two, which is better? Consider this your Bluechew vs

The Best Hair Loss Treatment for Men: Comparison Guide

If you’re looking for the best hair loss treatment for men, look no further than this comparison guide.

Roman Review: Is This Erectile Dysfunction Treatment Legit?

Roman is a remote men’s health service that focuses on providing treatments and prescriptions for a multitude of men’s health problems, such as erectile

What Happens When You Don’t Last? Premature Ejaculation Pills, Causes and Treatment

If you are suffering from premature ejaculation, you may be feeling that your sex life has been reduced to a frustrating experience. You might

BlueChew vs Roman: Which is Better?

BlueChew and Roman both men's health brands that offer erectile dysfunction treatments and ED pills. BlueChew products are typically less expensive, but fewer options

Is Alcohol Wreaking Havoc on Your Sexual Performance?

Drinking too much alcohol can wreak havoc on your sexual performance, while moderate alcohol consumption usually does not cause any issues. Excess alcohol consumption

Rex Md ED Review: What To Know Before You Sign Up

REX MD is a telehealth company that wants to reimagine the world of men’s healthcare. According to their site, they’re aiming to improve the

Hims Hair Loss Review: Is it Legit?

The Hims Total Hair Package contains clinically proven components that are effective at stopping hair loss and promoting hair growth, including saw palmetto thickening

Cialis vs Viagra: What’s the difference?

Cialis and Viagra can both be used to treat erectile dysfunction (ed) and benign prostatic hyperplasia (bph), but the medications are not interchangeable, and

How Much Sildenafil is Too Much? Maximum Dosage and Safety

If you’re considering treatment with sildenafil, you might be wondering how much sildenafil is too much and what the maximum dosage and safety concerns

Nutrafol Review: Are These Hair Supplements Effective?

Nutrafol is a telehealth company that offers a range of hair supplements for both men and women. Are these supplements effective, though?

How Does Viagra Work?

So, what is erectile dysfunction, how exactly does this wonder drug work to treat it, just like tadalafil, and how likely is it that

How Long Does it Take Viagra to Work?

If you’re wondering how long it takes for Viagra to work, we have everything you need to know about this popular little blue pill.

Exercises To Eliminate Erectile Dysfunction

Physical activity to eliminate erectile dysfunction include simple kegel exercises and pilates exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor and general aerobic exercise to improve

How Long Does Cialis Last?

In this article, we will answer all of your questions about this popular erectile dysfunction medication including how it works, how long it lasts,

Erectile Dysfunction: Symptoms and Causes

Erectile dysfunction is caused by a number of physical, emotional, and lifestyle factors, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, depression, and excessive alcohol

Finasteride Results Timeline and What to Expect

Finasteride starts working to lower the amount of the DHT in the body right away, but it will take several months before any results