Does Medicare Cover Symbicort?

Christian Worstell
In this article...
  • Symbicort is prescribed for people with asthma that hasn't responded to other medications. Keep reading to learn more about Medicare coverage of this drug.Symbicort is prescribed for people with asthma that hasn't responded to other medications. Keep reading to learn more about Medicare coverage of this drug.

Symbicort contains two active ingredients, budesonide and formoterol. Budesonide reduces inflammation in the lungs, while formoterol relaxes the muscles in the airways. When combined, these two substances are helpful for treating asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. 

This guide explains how Symbicort is used and provides an overview of the Medicare coverage available for Symbicort.

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Does Medicare Pay for Symbicort?

According to GoodRx, most Medicare Advantage (Part C) prescription drug plans or standalone Medicare Part D drug plans (PDPs) didn't cover Symbicort in 2023.1

Medicare beneficiaries should check their plan's drug formulary to determine whether it's covered and how much they can expect to pay for it each month.

Are There Any Out-of-Pocket Costs for Symbicort?

If your plan covers Symbicort, the cost of the medication depends in part on whether you've already paid your deductible for the year. A deductible is the amount of money you must pay before your plan starts paying for prescription medications.

In 2024, the maximum deductible for any Medicare drug plan is $545. Once you've paid your deductible, you may need to pay a copay or co-insurance for each prescription you fill. The amount due depends on the type of plan you have and the amount of coverage available for Symbicort.

What Is Symbicort Prescribed For?

Symbicort is prescribed for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and patients with asthma that isn't well-controlled by other asthma medications.

Some of the most common side effects of this medication include nasal irritation, sore throat, stomach pain, headaches and stuffy nose. It may take up to 2 weeks to see a noticeable difference in asthma or COPD symptoms, so it's important to continue taking Symbicort unless your doctor tells you to discontinue it.

Have Medicare questions?

Talk to a licensed agent today to find a plan that fits your needs.

Is Symbicort the Same as Albuterol?

Although Symbicort relaxes the muscles in the airways, it's not the same thing as albuterol. Symbicort is a maintenance inhaler that should be used daily, while albuterol is a rescue inhaler that's used only when someone has an asthma attack.

Both medications help people with respiratory problems, but Symbicort is used to prevent asthma and COPD symptoms, not to treat them once they've already occurred.

  1. GoodRx. Symbicort. Retrieved Nov 2023, from

Christian Worstell
About the Author

Christian Worstell is a senior Medicare and health insurance writer with He is also a licensed health insurance agent. Christian is well-known in the insurance industry for the thousands of educational articles he’s written, helping Americans better understand their health insurance and Medicare coverage.

Christian’s work as a Medicare expert has appeared in several top-tier and trade news outlets including Forbes, MarketWatch, WebMD and Yahoo! Finance.

While at HelpAdvisor, Christian has written hundreds of articles that teach Medicare beneficiaries the best practices for navigating Medicare. His articles are read by thousands of older Americans each month. By better understanding their health care coverage, readers may hopefully learn how to limit their out-of-pocket Medicare spending and access quality medical care.

Christian’s passion for his role stems from his desire to make a difference in the senior community. He strongly believes that the more beneficiaries know about their Medicare coverage, the better their overall health and wellness is as a result.

A current resident of Raleigh, Christian is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. You can find Christian’s most recent articles in our blog.

If you’re a member of the media looking to connect with Christian, please don’t hesitate to email our public relations team at

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