Rochester congressman introduces bill to help diabetics struggling to pay for insulin

Local News

In a press conference on Monday, Congressman Joseph Morelle (D-NY 25th District) introduced a bill to address the high cost of prescription diabetes medication.

Morelle, who commissioned a report from the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, found the prices of these life-saving drugs are significantly higher than the same drug in other countries.

“They cause patients to ration their care and even in some cases stop taking life-saving medication all together which is an extraordinary choice for people to have to make in the modern world,” said Morelle.

Insulin has many diabetics like Angela Civiletti to take extreme measures to deal with the costs.

“I have reached rationed my insulin,” said Civiletti. “I am currently doing that right now because I am still looking for help afford my medication.”

According to Morelle, the daily cost for insulin for the average diabetic has increased from $7.80 a day in 2012 to $15 a day in 2016.

“Due to the complex web of players, including the manufacturers, drug wholesalers, pharmacy benefit managers, insurers, and pharmacies combined with misaligned incentives, in the system, the price to consumers continue to increase,” said Dr. Curtis Hass, Director of Pharmacy at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

Morelle says the bill is expected to lessen the financial burden insulin has put on patients needing the drug to save their lives.

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