Kentucky law capping insulin cost for many goes into effect

January 1, 2022 GMT

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky law capping the cost of insulin for many residents went into effect with the new year.

Gov. Andy Beshear signed the legislation last March that makes insulin more affordable, calling it a “game changer” for many people in a state with one of the nation’s highest diabetes rates.

The law limits the cost of insulin to $30 per 30-day supply for many Kentuckians. The cap applies to people with state-regulated health care plans or plans purchased on the marketplace exchange, state employees and people under group plans, the governor’s office said.

“This is the right thing to do and it’s a game changer for those who rely on insulin to live,” Beshear said at a March signing ceremony attended by the bipartisan bill’s primary sponsors.

More than half-a-million Kentuckians have diabetes, and Kentucky ranks seventh nationally for diabetes prevalence. The Democratic governor, who refers to health care access as a “basic human right,” said some Kentuckians have had to pay more than $1,000 a month for insulin. That forced some people to ration the medication or go without it, he said.

ADVERTISEMENT

No lawmaker voted against House Bill 95 as it moved through the GOP-dominated legislature, culminating a multiyear effort to limit insulin prices. Its lead sponsors were Republican Rep. Danny Bentley, who is a diabetic, and Democratic Rep. Patti Minter, whose son has diabetes.

The American Diabetes Association applauded the bill’s passage into law, saying in a statement that Kentucky was joining 14 other states as well as the District of Columbia that have enacted insulin copay caps.