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General Assembly Approves Insulin CoPay Cap

Lawmakers have approved a bill to put a cap on how much people will have to pay for insulin.

Dealing with the cost of prescription drugs is a hardship for many people, and sometimes people trying to stretch the value of their dollar will ration their prescriptions. But that’s dangerous, and now lawmakers are taking action to help people handle the cost of one particular medication — insulin.

Members of the House and Senate have approved a bill that will put a cap on the amount that can be charged for co-pays.  “This is a tremendous win for people with diabetes in the commonwealth of Virginia,” said Delegate Lee Carter of Manassas.

Carter introduced a bill that would have capped the amount at $30 a month. The Senate amended that to $50 a month, and now both chambers have approved the amended version. 

“There are people being charged $300, $400 or $500 a month for their insulin in some cases even though they have health insurance," Carter noted.  "And what this does is that it brings down that out-of pocket cost so that people who have health insurance but are struggling to meet the co-pays no longer have to ration their insulin.”

The bill is on its way to the governor’s desk.

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.

Michael Pope is an author and journalist who lives in Old Town Alexandria.