Two of Pennsylvania’s Republicans in the US House joined their Democratic colleagues in passing legislation to keep the cost of insulin at $35 a month.
A bill that would cap the monthly cost of insulin at $35 for insured patients passed in the US House, despite the efforts of Republicans.
Brian Fitzpatrick (Bucks) and Dan Meuser (Luzerne) were the lone Pennsylvania Republicans to support the Affordable Insulin Now Act. It passed 232-193 Thursday.
Each of Pennsylvania’s nine Democrats in the House voted in favor of the bill.
The bill now heads to the Senate, where it faces an uncertain fate due to lack of Republican support. However Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine and Democrat Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire are working on a bipartisan insulin bill.
What is the Affordable Insulin Now Act?
The Affordable Insulin Now Act, HR 6833, calls for limiting cost-sharing under private health insurance and Medicare for a month’s supply of selected insulin products at $35 or 25% of a plan’s negotiated price, whichever is less, beginning in 2023.
Experts say the legislation, which was introduced by US Rep. Angie Craig, (D-Minn.) would provide significant relief for privately insured patients with bare-bones plans and for Medicare enrollees facing rising out-of-pocket costs for their insulin. Some could save hundreds of dollars annually, and all insured patients would get the benefit of predictable monthly costs for insulin. The bill would not help the uninsured who face the highest out-of-pocket costs for insulin.
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control, about 37 million Americans have diabetes, and an estimated 6 million to 7 million use insulin to keep their blood sugars under control. Due to rising prescription costs, about 650,000 diabetes patients ration their insulin.
Approximately 1.15 million people in Pennsylvania (11.1% of the adult population) have been diagnosed with diabetes, according to statistics from the American Diabetes Association.
The Full Pennsylvania Roll Call
- Brendan Boyle (D-Philadelphia) Yea
- Matt Cartwright (D-Lackawanna) Yea
- Madeleine Dean (D-Montgomery) Yea
- Mike Doyle (D-Allegheny) Yea
- Dwight Evans (D-Philadelphia) Yea
- Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) Yea
- Chrissy Houlahan (D-Chester) Yea
- John Joyce (R-Blair) Nay
- Fred Keller (R-Snyder) Nay
- Mike Kelly (R-Butler) Nay
- Conor Lamb (D-Allegheny) Yea
- Dan Meuser (R-Luzerne) Yea
- Scott Perry (R-York) Nay
- Guy Reschenthaler (R-Allegheny) Nay
- Mary Gay Scanlon (D-Delaware) Yea
- Lloyd Smucker (R-Lancaster) Nay
- Glenn Thompson (R-Centre) Nay
- Susan Wild (D-Lehigh) Yea
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.