Alex Smith died because he was a diabetic. This 26-year-old did not have to die. He died because he could not afford $1,300/monthly for his life-saving insulin.
He tried rationing his insulin (as many seniors do with their own medications). His rationing cost him his life. Seven million diabetics depend upon insulin. A vial of insulin went from $21 in 1996 to $320 in 2018. Many diabetics use several vials each month.
A Yale study found that 1 in 4 diabetics cut back on insulin use because of cost. These are mostly middle-class people with limited insurance. Over time, insulin rationing will lead to blindness, heart disease, kidney shutdown, nerve damage, amputations and death.
President Donald Trump promised to bring down drug prices. However, his Health and Human Services Secretary, Alex Azar, came from insulin maker Eli Lilly, which more than doubled the price of insulin from 2011 to 2016. Is this the fox guarding the hen house?
Now the mother of Alex Smith is just one of many who must face the loss of a young life cut short because of pharmaceutical avarice. It is worth noting the price of insulin in Canada is $48 a vial. A woman from Los Angeles purchased an 18-month supply of insulin in Mexico for $150. U.S. cost would have cost her over $3,000.