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Affordable Insulin Now Act could lower insulin cost to $35

If signed into law, the new pricing would go into effect on Oct. 1 for Medicare plans and Jan. 1 for private health plans.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — For some people, insulin is a key part of their lives — but it's hurting their bank accounts each time they need to have their medication refilled.

The Affordable Insulin Now Act, a bill introduced by Sen. Rev. Raphael Warnock in the Senate in February is hoping to change that. The legislation would limit cost-sharing for the hormone under private health insurance and the Medicare prescription drug benefit.

What would new prices look like if the bill is signed into law? Insulin would be capped at $35 or 25-percent of an insurance plan's negotiated price.

The new price would go into effect on Oct. 1 for Medicare plans and Jan. 1, 2023, for private health plans if passed.

One thing to keep in mind — this bill won't help people with diabetes who are uninsured or have a non-ACA insurance plan, according to Beyond Type 1.

Since the late 1990s, the costs of modern insulin have been on the rise.

Beyond Type 1 explains that modern insulin costs about $25-$40 a vial in the late 90s with insurance. By 2005, the price raised to $80 and continued to rise to $125 in 2010 and $260 in 2015.

From 2014 to 2019, the average retail price for different types of insulin rose 54-percent, GoodRx Health reports. From January 2020 to October 2021, the price only dropped five-percent.

According to Very Well Health, the price for a vial of insulin as of March 2022, ranges from $50-$1,000 while a pack of insulin pens ranges from $45-$600.

The Affordable Insulin Now Act, which was endorsed by the American Diabetes Association, plans to fight back against the prices.

While the bill has been introduced in the Senate, no further action has been taken. In the meantime, GoodRx Health has some ways to save on the price of insulin now:

  • Use a manufacturer savings card or patient assistance program
  • Shop around
  • Appeal your coverage

Click here for more information on the prices of insulin.

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