Texas: Affordable Insulin Now

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At the age of 2, my brother was diagnosed with type I diabetes and a few years later, at age 6, I was also diagnosed. Parents such as my own, with multiple type I diabetic children are forced to pay double for the supplies to cover their children’s needs. For as long as I can remember, these rising costs have directly affected both my family and my other diabetic friends. It has reached a point to where I am now having to share my own supply of insulin with my grandmother who also has type I diabetes. If it’s difficult for a middle class family with relatively good health insurance to pay for it, imagine how difficult it is for those with less resources and lower income.

It is known that the 3 largest, insulin producing, pharmaceutical companies Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk, and Sanofi can manufacturer this medicine for just a few dollars yet they choose to mark up the price by nearly 5,000%. A vial that costs $200 15 years ago now costs roughly $1500. This inflation has led to diabetics being forced to ration their supply due to only being able to afford a few vials for an entire month. As one would guess, this poses a major health risk for diabetics. Under-dosing from fear of running out will lead to hyperglycemia(high blood sugar) and in serious cases, death.

“At least three people died in 2017 from trying to ration their insulin and at least three more died in 2018. According to a study in JAMA Internal Medicine, as many as one in four people who rely on insulin have had to ration their supply.” - Nation Of Change It was also found that in 2019, 4 more people have died by this same cause.

With people’s lives at risk, it’s more evident than ever before that reduced inflation among insulin companies must occur. Creating this universal price cap on insulin and making it more accessible can only benefit the millions of people who suffer from this chronic condition.