House passes bill to lower insulin costs, but prospects unclear in Senate

The House moved on Thursday to revive one of the more popular provisions in last year’s failed social safety net package, and adopted a narrow healthcare bill that would dramatically cut costs for insulin users.

Notan was adopted by a vote of 232 to 193, with 12 House Republicans supporting all Democrats.

The measure would limit insulin costs to $ 35 per month for consumers enrolled in private health insurance plans or Medicare. Currently, based on the patient’s condition and choice of treatments, the cost can range from $ 334 to $ 1,000 per month for insulin. according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation 2020.

The House bill faces obstacles in the equally divided Senate, but Senators Jeanne Shaheen (DN.H.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) hope to be able to turn to bipartisan support to address the problem.

This is the Democrats’ first attempt to take a less controversial part of President Biden’s now defunct “Build Back Better” package and offer it as a stand-alone bill.

The $ 1.75 trillion bid, which included sweeping health care and climate policy reforms, came to a halt in December when Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia refused to approve it, depriving Democrats of the votes they needed in a Senate with 50-50 people.

By spinning thin parts of the larger package, the Democrats hope to achieve some legislative success before the six-month period in November, but it remains to be seen whether enough Republicans in the Senate will join.

Later, Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) Last month presented a bill similar to the one passed in the House on Thursday that would set a ceiling for patients’ costs at $ 35 a month. But it has failed to draw Republican support.

Now the eyes are on a bipartisan Shaheen-Collins bill, which would also be included in the issue of insulin. Its details have not been released yet.

“I think we have an overview of where we want to go,” Collins said.

Shaheen’s office said it had finalized an agreement “in principle” but had not released the final legislation.

About 34 million people in the United States have diabetes, many of which require regular doses of the life-saving medicine.

But insulin prices have doubled and even tripled in the last decade, despite no significant progress in their effectiveness, according to a 90-page report released last year by Sens. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore).).

Such costs only increase the country’s total healthcare expenditure. According to the American Diabetes Assn. stands for diabetes and its complications $ 1 out of every $ 7 spent on healthcare costs in the United States.

“I think [the legislation is] trying to address the underlying causes of the rise in insulin prices, which have not changed in over 100 years, and yet pharmaceutical companies continue to raise the price. So it’s an attempt to deal with it, Shaheen told reporters this week.

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