Despite the many cries to panic from the mainstream media and the rabid far-left, President Donald Trump has decided to turn his attention to a real, long-standing, and serious threat to the health of Americans — the cost of life-saving medicine.
On Wednesday, the administration announced that it would return to working on Trump’s campaign promise to help Americans gain access to fair drug prices. In particular, they have pledged at this time to focus on the high cost of insulin medicine, a vital medical necessity for diabetics.
According to Diabetes.org, about 10% of Americans, or 34 million people, live with the condition on a more or less permanent basis. They also report that almost 1.6 million have type 1 diabetes, including nearly 200,000 children. In addition to the confirmed cases, it is estimated that 27 million cases are currently undiagnosed.
It is also a sorely underreported fact that Americans are forced to pay much higher prices for life-saving medications than people in countries like Canada, England, and Australia. According to Diabeticnation.com, the out of pocket price for a unit of fast-acting insulin breaks down in terms of 1 USD per ML of insulin as follows:
- USA: $13.74 per ml
- Chile: $6.95 per ml
- Canada: $3.16 per ml
- Brazil: $2.57 per ml
The administration is aiming to limit the cost of insulin to $35 a month for those who are enrolled in Medicare. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services is calling on private insurance companies and drug manufacturers to voluntarily test out new pricing schemes that would make the $35 a month upper limit copayment a reality might work.
Trump is not alone in making affordable medication for Americans a reality. Congresspersons have also been working on this issue since last Fall, working to draft laws (prior to the impeachment debacle which is all but forgotten now) that would lower the price of drugs. Last Tuesday, the president sent members of Congress a list of requests for drug pricing reductions.
According to Newsmax.com, “CMS Administrator Seema Verma said the Trump administration wants to expand the initiative to lower the price of insulin to other drugs if it is successful. It starts with insulin because of complaints from beneficiaries about the exceptionally steep price increases.” She continued, “Roughly 1.2 million Medicare recipients could benefit if they enroll in plans that offer reduced copays.”
People enrolled in the existing federal healthcare program pay an average total of $657 million each year on insulin alone. Trump’s program would reduce that to $229 million on average per year. That amounts to $428 million more dollars in the pockets of American citizens. That would be a substantial increase in the buying power of the American people, and would almost certainly have a measurable positive effect on the economy.
The vast majority of insulin that is sold in the United States is manufactured by Novo Nordisk A/S, Sanofi SA, and Eli Lilly. These companies and health insurance providers have started offering insulin at discounted prices in response to Trump’s efforts.