House Passes Bill To Limit Insulin Costs to $35 a Month
Bill now has to pass the Senate with at least 10 Republican votes
FRIDAY, April 1, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- Americans who use insulin to control their diabetes could soon save hundreds of dollars every year on the medicine, after the House passed a $35-a-month cap on insulin costs Thursday.
The bill was passed by a 232-193 vote. It now has to pass the Senate with at least 10 Republican votes, though Democrats have said they were not sure how that might happen, the Associated Press reported. The Affordable Insulin Now Act would limit cost-sharing under private health insurance and Medicare for a month's supply of certain insulin products to $35, or 25 percent of a plan's negotiated price, whichever is less. It would take effect in 2023.
Depending on a patient's condition and treatments, costs can now range from roughly $200 to more than $1,000 a month for insulin, according to a 2020 Kaiser Family Foundation report.
If the bill does pass the Senate, it would help only people who have insurance, providing relief for privately insured patients and Medicare enrollees who are paying more out-of-pocket fees to get the medication. According to the latest data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 37.3 million Americans have diabetes.
In his State of the Union address on March 1, President Joe Biden urged Congress to pass legislation to cut prescription drug prices, including insulin. "Imagine what it's like to look at your child who needs insulin and have no idea how you're going to pay for it," Biden said. "Let's cap the cost of insulin at $35 a month so everyone can afford it. Drug companies will still do very well."