Reps. Patti Minter and Danny Bentley saw Gov. Andy Beshear sign their insulin price limit bill into law last March. (Screenshot)
Jan. 1 was the effective date of a new Kentucky law that caps at $30 the cost of a 30-day supply of insulin. But it affects fewer than a third of Kentucky diabetics, so “advocates and others in the commonwealth’s diabetic community are pushing for lawmakers to do more to open access to a medication that thousands in the Bluegrass State need to survive,” reports Lucas Aulbach of the Louisville Courier Journal.
The law, passed last year, applies to people covered by group health-insurance plans, those regulated only by the state, plans on the Kynect exchange, and state employees. It does not apply to those who have health insurance through their employers; or through sources like Medicare or Tricare, which covers U.S. military-service members and veterans.
“The problem is that a state can’t pass a law that would affect anything that’s federally regulated, and most people have health insurance that’s federally regulated,” advocate Sarah Ferguson told Aulbach. Her daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 14 more than 10 years ago.
More than half a million Kentuckians have diabetes, and Kentucky ranks seventh-highest in the U.S. for diabetes prevalence. more than one in four insulin-dependent people ration insulin due to cost, according to Angela Lautner, legislative lead for the Kentucky #insulin4all advocacy group.