Washington, DC — Today, U.S. House Assistant Democratic Leader James E. Clyburn (D-SC-06) and U.S. Representative Lucy McBath (D-GA-07) joined Protect Our Care for a press call to discuss the ongoing efforts to expand the Inflation Reduction Act’s insulin savings to every American. During the call, speakers discussed how lowering insulin costs is especially important for people of color, who disproportionately suffer from diabetes and are more likely to skip, ration, or completely forgo insulin as a result of outrageous costs.
The event is part of Protect Our Care’s “Fortnight of Action” to showcase the Inflation Reduction Act’s $35 insulin cap, which benefits more than three million seniors nationwide. Republicans in Congress blocked a provision that would have extended the cap to people with private insurance, but President Biden and Democrats in Congress are now fighting to extend these savings to an estimated 21 million patients who rely on insulin. Read more about the lifesaving policy here.
“Every American deserves to have access to quality, affordable health care and life-saving prescription medication. Matthew 25:45 teaches us, ‘whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ Congressional Democrats, under the leadership of President Biden, capped the monthly price of insulin for seniors on Medicare at $35. Next, we must build on the historic Inflation Reduction Act and extend the affordability of this life-saving medication to everyone who needs it,” said Congressman James E. Clyburn. “Our public health depends on the extension of the insulin cap to those on private insurance and the expansion of Medicaid to the 11 states — including South Carolina — that have refused to close the coverage gap. Now is the time to act.”
“The cost of health care can be the difference between putting a kid through college and affording treatment, and that just simply should not happen. It’s why I’m so proud to have led a bill that kept the cost of insulin at $35 a month for our seniors. We’re continuing this fight to make this life-saving drug more available and more affordable because there’s no time off. When you live with diabetes, it’s a constant ever present disease that influences every aspect of your life,” said U.S. Representative Lucy McBath.“This is about saving lives. We’re here today to continue this fight for those who sent us to Washington on their behalf and we’ll continue to do this work to expand savings for these life-saving drugs because the American people deserve it.”
“My daughter was diagnosed at eight years old with type-1 diabetes. When she was diagnosed, we were paying $1,500 a month for insulin. This is not counting the test strips to check blood sugars and all the other stuff that comes with diabetes. So a lot of us turn to groups online to ask for help. I’ve had people from Canada and Colorado send us insulin. We are the most powerful nation in the world. Health care should not be a card game,” said Elise Oberdorfer-Douglas from Atlanta, GA.
“For too long, Big Pharma has been pulling the strings, putting their sky-high profits above the needs of real people,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “While Republicans in Congress are doing everything in their power to roll back the Inflation Reduction Act’s insulin savings and block any new legislation to lower drug prices, Democrats are working on behalf of hardworking families to ensure everyone can afford the medications they need to stay healthy.”