On Wednesday, March 4, 2020, members of the legislature’s Insurance Committee approved measures to reduce the cost of insulin and provide more financial stability for Connecticut diabetics.
State Rep. Dave Yaccarino (R-87) co-sponsored Senate Bill 1 – An Act Concerning Diabetes and High Deductible Health Plans and House Bill 5175, both of which aim to cap the cost of insulin at $50 per thirty-day supply and will also cap the cost of all medically necessary, covered diabetes supplies and equipment at $100 per month.
“Much like other things in this state, the price of insulin continues to rise year-over-year, and for those living with diabetes, this has proven to be a grave financial burden as well as a matter of life and death. This legislation would ensure that individuals who need insulin to survive are able to afford it. Living with diabetes is challenging enough, these individuals should not have to worry about being able to pay for their diabetes-related prescriptions on top of that,” said Rep. Yaccarino.
If passed, Connecticut will be one of the first states nationwide to regulate the cost of insulin. Similar measures have already been passed in both Illinois and Colorado but with slightly higher price caps.
The original concept that was brought before the committee appeared to provide for a tax on the manufacture of insulin. However, the bills that were favorably reported to the full General Assembly, did not contain a tax.
Similar to a recently passed law in Ohio, the proposed legislation also includes a provision to allow licensed pharmacists to provide up to a one-month supply of lifesaving drugs, including insulin, without a valid prescription, if a patient does not have direct access to supplies and whose life is in immediate danger.
The 2020 legislative session ends at midnight on Wednesday, May 6.