OWEGO, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Nearly 60 thousand people suffer from diabetes in the Southern Tier, yet many cannot afford the insulin they need.
Chuck Schumer, Senate Majority Leader, revealed a plan yesterday at the Tioga County Social Services Department in Owego to reduce the cost of insulin to 35 dollar per prescription each month. This is down from the typical 300 to 600 dollar price.
Schumer was joined by Dr. David Kwiatkowski, the Elite Medical Director of UHS Medical Group, who believes that capping the cost of insulin will reduce the need for diabetics to skip or ration doses.
Schumer’s legislation would do just that.
“With my power as majority leader, I intend to put that bill on the floor as early as July and hopefully it will pass and the price of diabetes will go way down,” said Schumer. “One out of every four diabetes patients doesn’t take their insulin or cuts back on their insulin because they can’t afford it and that leads to all kinds of problems: blindness, amputation, you name it.”
Kwiatkowski says that the United States obesity epidemic has increased the number of type 2 diabetics. Those with this condition often become resistant to their oral medication, making them dependent on insulin injections.