U.S. House passes bill to cap insulin prices
Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill with a bipartisan vote that would limit the monthly price of insulin to $35 for insured patients – helping millions of Americans and North Carolinians living with diabetes.
According to the Health Care Cost Institute, between 2012 and 2016, the price of insulin almost doubled. In 2012, the average cost of insulin per patient was $2,864 per year. By 2016, the cost rose to $5,705 per year.
Despite the impact of making life-preserving medicine more affordable, all but one of North Carolina’s Republican members of Congress voted against the bill.
- In North Carolina, over 1 million adults are living with diabetes, and over 2.7 million North Carolinians may have prediabetes. Nationally, approximately 34.2 million people, or 10.5% of the U.S. population, have diabetes according to the CDC.
- More than 80% of Americans across political parties reportedly support keeping insulin costs down – underscoring how out of touch Republican leaders are with the interests of their constituents.
- “(Last week’s) vote by nearly the entire North Carolina Republican congressional delegation, including U.S. Senate candidate Ted Budd, against capping insulin costs, is a slap in the face to the many North Carolinians on private health insurance and Medicare who depend on this life-saving drug,” stated North Carolina Democratic Party Chair Bobbie Richardson in a press release.
If passed, the insulin cap bill would make a step forward in tackling high prescription drug costs – a move that was initially part of President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better plan, yet was stalled due to Republican opposition.
Now it’s up to the U.S. Senate to enact a sorely needed change that would give millions of Americans financial ease when it comes to insulin prices.
Republicans will have an opportunity once more to join Democrats in taking bold action to alleviate a significant health care burden for millions, or continue siding with big corporations who are ripping off everyday people.