Durbin Sponsors New Legislation Aimed at Lowering Insulin Costs

It’s a lifeline for people with diabetes, but paying for insulin can be a challenge for families - even those with insurance. 

"Every time I meet with families, this is what they want to talk about," said Mimi Crabtree, executive director of the Illinois Chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. "We found a study that 25% of people with diabetes are rationing insulin because of the cost."

Five-year-old Joey Inglima was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes nearly two years ago and now relies on insulin.

"Every time he eats he needs to get some sort of insulin put in," his father, Joe Inglima, said. 

But just one vial of insulin costs the Inglima’s $60 every month, with insurance.

"We have pretty much cut back on everything," Inglima said, to have money to pay for Joey’s insulin. 

Now, there’s a new push in Washington, D.C. to change that. 

"We’ve seen steady increase, dramatic increase of the cost of insulin every year for the last 20 years and it’s time to do something about it," Sen. Dick Durbin said at a news conference in Chicago Monday.

Durbin is sponsoring bipartisan legislation that would speed up FDA approval for generic insulin, which he believes would lower the price of insulin by promoting competition and bringing lower-cost generic products to the market sooner.

"Competition is the best way to bring down the price of drugs," Durbin said. 

Joe Inglima says his family will continue to make sacrifices to ensure Joey gets the insulin he needs, hopeful relief is on the horizon.

"I am extremely hopeful for my sake, for my family’s sake, for my son’s sake. It’s not easy especially for those that don’t have insurance,” Inglima said.

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