Spiking insulin prices need intervention

In the United States, 9.4 percent of the population suffers from diabetes or is pre-diabetic. Diabetes is a disease that can not be cured, especially children can not work they way out of it by dieting or exercise. Without insulin, the medication that keeps millions of Americans alive today, it is a matter of life and death. 

There are two types of diabetes, Type 1 and Type 2—Type 1 having to do nothing with how much one weighs or how much sugar they consume. Scientists are still trying to figure out why the patient’s immune system destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas; until then, one who is diagnosed with diabetes, depends on insulin.

The price of insulin is outrageous and keeps escalating every single day. Junior Sami Zimmerman, diagnosed with diabetes herself and an activist for people who are diagnosed with diabetes as well as advocating to fund research, said, “We use the hormone insulin to bring our blood sugars down; otherwise, one can face severe complications such as death. Especially people with Type 1 diabetes can’t survive without insulin, so, people who don’t have access to insulin will suffer severe complications and real harm to their health.” 

Yet, there is no action taken against the rising prices, no matter the apparency of critical risks patients are suffering from. 

“It is very scary to know that these companies are using this life saving drug as leverage to get more money in a business,” Zimmerman said. 

Type 1 diabetics spent an average of $5,705 on insulin in 2016, which was double the price of what they paid four years earlier in 2012, even though they’re using about the same amount, which means the price of the daily usage of the drug increased from $7.80 a day to $15 a day. 

This increase in the price doesn’t make sense and is criminal considering the lives of people that are threatened so companies can fold the amounts of money they make for a drug for which the patent was sold for only $3 to a university a 100 years ago.

Congress must intervene to get the costs under control, and the government should regulate prices in order to save people’s lives and help them out from a life threatening situation. 

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