On Thursday, the House passed a bill that limited the cost of insulin to $35 a month. However, 193 Republican members of the House did not feel that their voters needed to pay less for insulin. The price of insulin is a huge issue, but this bill subsidizes drug intermediaries at taxpayers’ expense.
WHAT’S HAPPENING: In the Build Back Better bill, Democrats are actually proposing limiting insulin prices to $35 a month but Republicans can’t have any of that. PhRMA spent pharma’s money well and bought some politicians while people who need insulin are suffering.
- The global insulin market is dominated by three companies: Eli Lilly, the French company Sanofi and the Danish firm Novo Nordisk.
- In the past decade alone, U.S. insulin list prices have tripled, according to an analysis of data from IBM Watson Health
- According to IBM Watson Health data, Sanofi’s popular insulin brand Lantus was $35 a vial when it was introduced in 2001; it’s now $270. Novo Nordisk’s Novolog was priced at $40 in 2001, and as of July 2018, it’s $289.
- Stories of people rationing insulin and dying as a result continue to appear in the media.
- A study showing that one in four insulin-treated patients surveyed at an urban US diabetes center were found to be cutting back on insulin use because of cost has been published.
- The survey results also reveal that cost-related insulin underuse was associated with worse glycemic control and that more than a third of patients did not discuss the insulin underuse with their clinicians.
- Of those who completed the survey, 25.5% (51) reported cost-related insulin underuse.