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Connecticut News

Schumer and Blumenthal back bill that reduces insulin costs to $35 per month

Judith Garcia, 19, fills a syringe as she prepares to give herself an injection of insulin at her home in the Los Angeles suburb of Commerce, Calif. (Reed Saxon/AP)
Judith Garcia, 19, fills a syringe as she prepares to give herself an injection of insulin at her home in the Los Angeles suburb of Commerce, Calif. (Reed Saxon/AP)

A new bill has been set in motion by U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) that could reduce insulin costs to $35 per month.

The announcement on Monday follows months after the U.S. House approved the Affordable Insulin Now Act last November. Schumer said he will bring the legislation to a vote in the Senate in March.

“High drug prices are causing people to sacrifice their health,” Schumer said. “This bill would ensure once and for all that families who have someone who has diabetes don’t have to make the impossible decision of putting food on the table or getting the drug you need.”

Since 2012, the insulin rate has risen up to 17% each year. A month’s supply today can cost at least $400. Doctors who support the bill say they are concerned patients who cannot afford insulin will ration their supply, which can lead to more and deadly health complications.

The bill was one part of President Biden’s Build Back Better plan, which the GOP unanimously opposed. However, most Republican Senators have backed capping out-of-pocket insulin costs in the past.

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) said the bill is a matter of life and death for 275,000 Connecticut residents with diabetes needing insulin.

“In the state of Connecticut, 10% of our population have been affected by the spiraling cost of insulin which have tripled in recent years,” Blumenthal said on Tuesday. “We need to put a cap on those costs, right now.”