On May 22, 2019, Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed the first bill in the nation that will cap insulin co-pays at $100 per month, regardless of the number of vials needed. House Bill 1216: Reduce Insulin Prices, also enlists the Colorado Attorney General to investigate the rising price of insulin in Colorado and make recommendations to the General Assembly for further action. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) applauds Governor Polis and bill sponsors, Representative Dylan Roberts and Senators Kerry Donovan and Kevin Priola, for their leadership on this important legislation to reduce the burden of insulin costs for people living with diabetes.
“This American Diabetes Association-supported legislation is monumental for people living with diabetes,” said LaShawn McIver, MD, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs & Advocacy. “There are more than 30 million Americans living with diabetes, and approximately 7.4 million of them must take insulin every day to live. With the prices of insulin nearly tripling between 2002 and 2013, people with diabetes often face financial hardships affording their insulin. Many are faced with tough decisions to either cut back or skip doses, or forgo other necessities to pay for insulin. Thank you to Governor Polis, Representative Roberts, and Senators Donovan and Priola for this legislation and their continued efforts to protect the more than 400,000 Coloradans living with diabetes.”
The ADA continues to be a leader in federal and state efforts to ensure that insulin is affordable and accessible for all people who need the life-sustaining medication. In 2016, the ADA launched its Make Insulin Affordable initiative and has more than 487,000 supporters of the ADA’s petition for affordable insulin nationwide. In 2018, after its examination of the insulin supply chain, the ADA’s Insulin Access and Affordability Working Group published a white paper detailing the issue, and the ADA issued public policy recommendations to address the problem. The ADA has also testified at multiple hearings before the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives focused on the high cost of insulin.
HB 1216 is especially meaningful for Representative Roberts, who lost a brother to type 1 diabetes in 2016. “I am so proud that Colorado is now leading the way to lower the cost of insulin. Getting HB 1216 to the Governor’s desk was a huge team effort, and I thank the countless people who came to the Capitol to tell lawmakers their story and why this bill is urgently needed,” remarked Representative Dylan Roberts, the bill’s prime sponsor. “However, this soon-to-be law is just a start. I look forward to working with the Attorney General’s office on their investigation and to bring forward more legislation for transparency and lower costs for Coloradans with diabetes.”
For more information about this legislation, please contact Rep. Roberts’ office at: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are struggling to pay for insulin or know someone who is, ADA has resources to help—visit InsulinHelp.org.
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Every day more than 4,000 people are newly diagnosed with diabetes in America. Nearly 115 million Americans have diabetes or prediabetes and are striving to manage their lives while living with the disease. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization fighting to bend the curve on the diabetes epidemic and help people living with diabetes thrive. For nearly 80 years the ADA has been driving discovery and research to treat, manage and prevent diabetes, while working relentlessly for a cure. We help people with diabetes thrive by fighting for their rights and developing programs, advocacy and education designed to improve their quality of life. Diabetes has brought us together. What we do next will make us Connected for Life. To learn more or to get involved, visit us at diabetes.org or call 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383). Join the fight with us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn).