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Sweet Promise Of Insulin Refund Law: Know More About Industry Practices; Pay Less For Insulin [VIDEO]

Update Date: May 02, 2017 07:33 PM EDT
Insulin refund law
Rising insulin prices in Nevada are expected to be capped, as a new insulin refund law is set to be passed by state lawmakers. (Photo : Getty Images / John Moore)

The state of Nevada is set to vote on a so called insulin refund law, as the state aims to curb how much consumers pay out-of-pocket for insulin and other drugs in the treatment of diabetes. Get to know more details, here.

When Will It Be Implemented And How Does It Work?

The insulin refund law is set to be voted on early this May, which sets guidelines how much people, from the employers down to the end users, pay for insulin. The law is the first of its kind that tasks pharmaceutical companies to publicly release information on how much money was poured into producing the drug and discounts they give to insurers and wholesalers, Associated Press reported.

Aside from disclosure of marketing and production costs that effectively looks like a price control mechanism, the insulin refund law requires the big pharmaceutical companies to refund insurance companies and end users if insulin prices go above acceptable levels due to inflation.

The proposed law also requires the drugmakers to notify state authorities 90 days before they raise insulin prices. The proposal also covers acts done by pharmaceutical sales agents who will be required to get licenses to sell insulin and diabetes-related drugs in Nevada, as well as detail what gifts or samples they give doctors and pharmacists if and when they meet, The Sacramento Bee reported.

Though expecting legal challenges, the insulin refund law is expected to sail through the Nevada state legislature with backing from both the Republican and Democratic sides of the fence. The industry experts believe that the insulin refund law stems from the growing public clamor on controlling rising prices of medicines.

Reaction From Drug Manufacturers

Drugmakers however refuse to back the insulin refund law, as they believe that basing prices and refunds on inflation is ineffective . They cited that market prices fluctuate a lot and the market is more complicated than it looks.

The state of Nevada is the first to require disclosure of production costs of prescription drugs but the movement to control prices of prescription drugs has already gained ground in some US states. California had lost a case against price control last year but intends to pass another bill which requires notification of price hikes above 10 percent.

Ohio is looking into creating a similar bill as Nevada's, while Vermont has enacted a law, which requires justification of price increases above 15 percent. Stay tuned for more updates.

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