Prescription Drug Coverage

Golytely (Polyethylene Glycol/Electrolytes) Medicare Coverage

You may be able to find Medicare plan options in your area that cover polyethylene glycol with electrolytes (generic Golytely). Learn more about Golytely and find Medicare Advantage plans in your area that cover other prescription drugs.
Chemical name: Polyethylene Glycol with Electrolytes

Brand name: Golytely

Typical dosage: 4L

Typical type: Liquid1

Golytely is a medication used for bowel cleansing before a colonoscopy or enema examination. Golytely is available as a brand name or generic and comes as a powder to make an oral liquid.

Golytely is a medication that contains an active ingredient that is a polyethylene glycol-electrolyte solution.

Golytely is used for bowel cleansing right before a colonoscopy or an enema X-ray examination. Golytely helps clear your bowels by using electrolytes and water to make you defecate.

Typically, your doctor will recommend drinking 8 ounces every 10 minutes until you consume a total of 4 liters.

Common side effects of Golytely include stomach pain, irritation, bloating, feeling full, upset stomach, cramps, insomnia and increased hunger.

How much does Polyethylene Glycol and Electrolytes cost with Medicare?

Polyethylene Glycol and Electrolytes coverage and costs may vary based on the specific plan you have, as well as what coverage stage you're in.

Contact your plan carrier or consult your plan formulary for more cost information.

Does Medicare cover Polyethylene Glycol and Electrolytes?

According to GoodRx, 99% of Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare Part D plans covered Polyethylene Glycol and Electrolytes in 2023.1

  • Medicare Advantage plans or Part D plans that cover Polyethylene Glycol and Electrolytes include copay amounts that can range widely from one plan to another. Plan members may also be responsible for meeting a deductible before the plan’s drug coverage kicks in.

  • Medicare Advantage plans that offer prescription drug coverage are called Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plans (MA-PD). 89% of 2023 Medicare Advantage plans included prescription drug coverage.2

  • Medicare prescription drugs plans each have their own formulary, or drug list, that details what prescription drugs are covered by the plan and how they are covered.

Drug coverage may vary based on plan availability. You may be able to find Medicare Advantage plan options in your area that cover Polyethylene Glycol and Electrolytes. We represent carriers such as Humana, UnitedHealthcare®, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, Aetna, Cigna Healthcare, Wellcare, or Kaiser Permanente.

You can also compare Part D prescription drug plans available where you live and enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan online when you visit

Additional information

Follow the instructions on how to take Golytely. This includes when to take it, foods and drinks to avoid before your exam and when to stop eating or drinking before your exam. Do not take any medications within 1 hour of taking Golytely.

Mix Golytely with water before taking it. Do not add any flavoring or other additives unless they come with the medication. You can chill the solution to make it taste better.  

Try to drink 8 ounces of liquid every 10 minutes unless otherwise instructed by your doctor. It is preferred for you to drink each portion rapidly, rather than drinking small amounts continuously. Continue this until you drink 4 liters of the solution in total.

Golytely can cause you to become dehydrated after use. Tell your doctor if you get dizzy, pass out or have any other unusual side effects.

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This article is for informational purposes only. It is not healthcare advice, treatment, or diagnosis. It is not an endorsement of or recommendation for this medication. Speak to your doctor or healthcare provider about your specific healthcare needs, including your prescription medications. Only take medication as directed by your doctor.

Coverage and costs of prescription medications will vary by Medicare plan. Not all plans are available in all areas.


Written by Hayden Gharibyar, Pharm.D.

1 GoodRx. Golytely. Retrieved October 2023, from

2 Freed M, et al. (Nov 10, 2022). Medicare Advantage 2023 Spotlight: First Look. Kaiser Family Foundation.