U.S. Representative Bobby L. Rush (D-Ill.) introduced H.R.366, the Insulin Access for All Act of 2019 on January 9, 2019 in Washington, D.C. This bill, cosponsored by 31 members of the Congressional Black Caucus, eliminates the cost sharing requirement under Medicare and Medicaid for insulin.
“This bill, introduced with significant cosponsors, addresses the appalling issue plaguing Americans who have one of the most devastating and debilitating diseases of modern times — diabetes. There are many who simply cannot afford the insulin they need to live longer, active, and productive lives. This legislation tackles that issue head on and ensures that those suffering from diabetes no longer have to pay out-of-pocket costs for insulin. No American should go without life-sustaining medication,” said Rush.
This legislation was inspired by countless stories like that of Alec Raeshawn Smith, age 26, who died because he was forced to ration his insulin after he aged out of his parents’ insurance coverage. Stories like this are further proof that we must do something to lower prescription drug costs. “I am pleased to see that House Democrats’ agenda includes work on this vital and life-saving issue for the people,” said Rush. A study by The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology journal predicts that by 2030, 79 million adults with type 2 diabetes are expected to need insulin to manage their condition and if current levels of access remain, only half of them will be able to be able to get an adequate supply.
Congressional Black Caucus members cosponsoring this legislation include Representatives Alma Adams (N.C.), Joyce Beatty (Ohio), Sanford D. Bishop Jr. (Ga.), Anthony Brown (Md.), G.K. Butterfield (N.C.), André Carson (Ind.), Yvette D. Clarke (N.Y.), William “Lacy” Clay Jr. (Mo.), James E. Clyburn (S.C.), Danny K. Davis (Ill.), Val Demings (Fla.), Dwight Evans (Pa.), Marcia L. Fudge (Ohio), Steven Horsford (Nev.), Sheila Jackson Lee (Texas), Henry C. “Hank” Johnson Jr. (Ga.), Robin Kelly (Ill.), Al Lawson (Fla.), Barbara Lee (Calif.), John Lewis (Ga.), A. Donald McEachin (Va.), Donald Payne Jr. (N.J.), Stacey Plaskett (Virgin Islands), Ayanna Pressley (Mass.), Cedric Richmond (La.), David Scott (Ga.), Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (Va.), Terri A. Sewell (Ala.), Bennie G. Thompson (Miss.), Bonnie Watson Coleman (N.J.), Frederica Wilson (Fla.).