ARLINGTON, Va., April 17, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Recently, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed into law American Diabetes Association (ADA)-supported legislation capping monthly copayments for insulin at $100 for a 30-day supply. Senate Bill 6087 (SB 6087) requires insulin to be covered by state regulated commercial health insurance plans and state employee plans without being subject to a deductible. In addition, any cost sharing the individual is required to pay by their policy will be applied toward their deductible. The bill also contains a provision directing the Washington Health Care Authority to monitor the wholesale cost of insulin sold in the state.
The ADA is encouraged that Governor Inslee and state's legislature put the nearly 700,000 people living with diabetes in Washington at the forefront in this difficult time.
"Americans with diabetes are facing unprecedented health and financial challenges as COVID-19 continues to spread," said LaShawn McIver, MD, MPH, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs & Advocacy for the ADA. "The high cost of insulin can have devastating consequences, often forcing those living with diabetes to make hard choices that can lead to devastating health complications. The good news is, help is on the way for Washington residents with diabetes who are struggling to pay for their insulin. Starting January 1, 2021, this new law will remove one of the burdens faced by many people with diabetes in in the state who need insulin to live. We are grateful to Governor Inslee, as well as bill sponsor Karen Keiser and the Washington legislature for taking steps to help those with diabetes thrive."
"This is huge for people with diabetes," said Irl B. Hirsch, MD, Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington (UW) and former chair of the ADA's Professional Practice Committee. "Affording insulin is by far the number one challenge my patients with diabetes face. We are fortunate to be living in a forward-thinking state that has made this issue a priority. Now more than ever finances are a major challenge, and anything we can do to reduce this stress will improve the lives of these Washingtonians."
For more information about this legislation, please contact Senator Keiser at [email protected].
While this co-pay cap is a step forward in the fight for affordable insulin, the ADA recognizes that people with diabetes need relief now more than ever to stay healthy and out of doctor's offices, emergency rooms and hospitals. To address the immediate needs of people with diabetes in Washington during the coronavirus pandemic, the ADA has urged Governor Inslee to eliminate all cost-sharing for insulin in state-regulated health insurance plans and revert to the $100 co-pay cap when the crisis passes. The ADA also urged state governors to ensure continuous access to health care for residents with diabetes who have lost their jobs due to the economic impact of the pandemic.
The ADA continues to be the driving force in federal and state efforts to ensure that insulin is affordable and accessible for all people who need it. Take action today at diabetes.org/advocacy/platform.
If you are struggling to pay for insulin or know someone who is, the ADA has resources to help—visit InsulinHelp.org.
About the American Diabetes Association
Every day more than 4,000 people are newly diagnosed with diabetes in America. More than 122 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).
Contact: Alex Day, 703-253-4843
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SOURCE American Diabetes Association