On Sunday, Senate Republicans rejected a proposal to limit out-of-pocket insulin costs for non-Medicare patients.
The price of the age-old medicine has tripled over two decades, forcing diabetes patients to shell out thousands of dollars for the life-saving drug.
Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) has proposed a $35 cap on monthly out-of-pocket insulin costs as part of the Democrats’ sweeping health care and climate package, which the Senate is on the verge of passing. But during a marathon weekend of back-to-back votes on the legislation, Republicans lowered the cap for patients with private insurance. The Senate lawmaker, a nonpartisan consultant, ruled that the non-Medicare portion of the proposed cap did not comply with the rules for reconciliation, the tactic Democrats use to pass legislation and avoid a Republican filibuster.
In a partial victory for Democrats, the portion of the legislation that would cap insulin costs for Medicare patients was left untouched. More than 7 million Americans rely on insulin to manage their diabetes, including more than 3 million Medicare beneficiaries. Monthly insulin co-payments are covered in 20 states, including nine states where the cap is $35 or lower.