People with diabetes have died because they can’t afford the insulin they need to stay alive.
With the rising cost of the medicine and America’s inadequate health care system, people who struggle to afford the medication have been cutting back their usage, hoping to prolong the medication they do have and keep the costs down. Unfortunately that has meant people have gone into shock and died as their blood sugar levels have spiked to dangerous heights.
Type 1 diabetics require insulin to live, but the rising cost of the drug has put people in serious danger.
There are many factors contributing to the rising cost of insulin. First, the health deductibles are skyrocketing and the cost of the drug is set by private payers and not the government. Finally, many versions of the drug have not released their generic form because the patent holder changes and updates the patent regularly to keep them from expiring.
As long as this continues to happen, we will see more deaths. As NYMag posted:
There are hundreds of GoFundMes to raise money for insulin and other diabetic supplies, like insulin pumps, which is not surprising. According to a January study in JAMA Internal Medicine, a quarter of diabetics have rationed insulin due to high costs. Insulin prices, meanwhile, continue to rise. The drug doubled in annual cost from 2012 to 2016, and earlier this month, two major insulin manufacturers hiked prices again. Novo Nordisk and Sanofi increased the prices of their U.S. insulin products by around 4 to 5 percent, the Financial Times reported in January. On Wednesday, the House Oversight Committee sent letters to both manufacturers and a third, Eli Lilly, as part of a probe on insulin price hikes.
Take care of yourselves out there, and vote for health care reform.