MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — As Congress grills drug companies about the high cost of prescription medications, Democratic U.S. Rep. Peter Welch of Vermont has introduced legislation that would allow for the importation of lower cost insulin from Canada and other countries in response to the spike in insulin prices in the U.S.
The American Diabetes Association says insulin prices nearly tripled in the U.S. between 2002 and 2013. Welch says the spike has led some diabetes patients to ration the life-saving drug or skip taking it.
A 26-year-old Minnesota man died from diabetes complications in 2017 because he struggled to afford his insulin prescription. In Vermont, 39-year-old Elia Marquis now pays $2,015 out-of-pocket a month for the drug until she meets her deductible.
The legislation is co-sponsored by Republican Rep. Francis Rooney of Florida.