With the new year comes new legislation taking into effect. Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act made some serious changes in the way some people will receive their insulin this year.
More than 7 million people in the United States require daily insulin in order to stay alive. Starting January 1, Insulin, which is a lifesaving drug for people with diabetes, was capped at 35$ for Medicare beneficiaries as part of the Inflation Reduction act that was signed back in August by President Biden. The price of insulin has skyrocketed over the past decade, some studies even showing a 200% increase.
“Paying out of pocket can be anywhere from 300 bucks a month to a thousand, two thousand dollars a month, With insurance, a lot of times it’s covered, a lot of times patients in deductible stages or on Medicare have to meet their deductible and their copays can still be hundreds of dollars even if it is covered.”
The only people that are eligible for the price cap are those under Medicare Part D, the outpatient prescription drug benefit, and under Part B when used with an external insulin pump. The cap does not apply to those using private insurance after Republicans blocked that portion of the bill.
“If you’re in need of insulin and you don’t have it, it’s not good, You can end up in the hospital at the very least, if not dead. It’s unfortunate but we hear it all the time that people just can’t afford to pay for their insulin. I’ve heard of a lot of people driving to Canada, Mexico, to get it.
Pastorek also said that about 1 in 10 people struggle to afford their insulin at his pharmacy but hopefully the new price cap will change that.
“There’s a lot of gaps in the healthcare system in the U.S. and definitely more needs to be done but this is a good step in the right direction,”
If you’re wondering whether or not you’re eligible for the price cap, you can contact your doctor or insurance provider.