New legislation went into effect in Virginia on Friday, Jan. 1 capping insulin copays at $50 per month. State Del. Lee Carter, D-50th, introduced HB 66 to the General Assembly during the 2020 session. Gov. Ralph Northam signed the bill into law in April.
“One in 10 Virginians need insulin products to manage their health,” Carter said. “Now, they can rest assured that their insurance companies won’t price gouge them on copays.”
Initially, Carter’s bill limited the cost sharing of insulin to $30 per 30-day supply for individuals with state-regulated commercial insurance. The General Assembly raised the cap to the current legal cap of $50 per month. The bill was supported by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the Medical Society of Virginia, and the ADA.
Approximately 837,000 Virginians suffer from diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association (ADA). Of that number, an estimated 207,000 are unaware of their conditions.
The ADA estimates that diabetes and prediabetes cost Virginians $8.2 billion each year.
According to the American Action Forum, the average list price of insulin increased 11% annually from 2001 to 2018. The average annual cost of insulin per person is now close to $6,000.
AAF says diabetes is now the most expensive chronic condition in the U.S.